The winter days are long and the memories of warm summer afternoons seem so distant. Crostata di Marmellata is the ultimate dolce to prepare during the winter months to recall summers past. Freshly picked berries, cherries, peaches, and apricots are no longer available at the market, but flavorful jams reminiscent of the delights of summer certainly are. Some of my wonderfully talented friends shared their special jams of the season this year: olallieberry, strawberry and apricot. What better way to feature these jams than to make them the centerpiece of a lattice topped crostata. Don’t despair if you are not as fortunate as I in the friends who make jam department, there are many high quality jams on the market to choose from. Pick one to treat family, friends, and yourself to the sweet memories of summer….
Archives for January 2015
Pasta frolla recipes are widespread and differ slightly yet all produce a rich and tender crust comparable to a cookie dough. The pastry is made with eggs and/or egg yolks, flour, butter and sugar and is generally prepared for fruit or jam tarts. My instructions, although simple may seem a bit tedious in the way I detail forming the dough. It is intentional – the pastry is fatto a mano or made by hand, because this will render the tenderest of crusts. This basic yet specific handling technique is to insure that the finished pastry remains delicate once baked. An indispensable and inexpensive kitchen tool, the bench scraper will make the preparation a breeze. Please don’t skip refrigerating the dough, as this allows a resting period which makes handling far easier….
Salmon is not a fish that is native to Italian waters and something I had never seen until more recently when in Italy, mostly in upscale restaurants. The rich, fatty nature of salmon pairs perfectly with so many indigenous Italian herbs, produce and products. A grilled salmon steak with a drizzle of Balsamico; a freshly chopped tomato, garlic and herb topping; or perhaps simply set on a bed of wood roasted cannellini beans with a touch of Extra Virgin Olive Oil… Oh the possibilities are endless….
Cucina Povera, the food of the poor, is a recurring theme in regional Italian cooking. With the limited availability of meat as a source of protein, Italians relied on other viable sources to sustain themselves. With the burgeoning popularity of all things Italian, one sees a trend in making these recipes widespread in popular foodie culture. Vegetarian culture has also contributed to bringing this type of recipe to the forefront….