APPLE PIE

This apple pie is so easy to make. We are going to use a top quality store bought apple pie crust, so it is only the filling that we have to prepare. Hear in Trento, there is a similar dessert called strudel. which is made with apple, but there are different ingredients add to that and the shape is also different. I promise to make it in on of my posts in the near future.

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Any way this apple pie is to die for.  I hope it becomes one of your favorites as it is mine. I have also liked the apple pie that I have seen on  http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/old_fashioned_apple_pie/ . It is quit good.

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yield – 8 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 store bought pastry crust (at room temperature)
  • 6 golden delicious apples (peeled, cored and sliced thinly)
  • 3 tablespoon all purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoon white sugar
  • the juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 tablespoon butter cut in small cubes

Garnish

  • Icing sugar

Procedure

  1. Heat the oven to 150C /302F. We are going to use a 2 and 1/2 quarts or 9 inch round tin baking dish with parchment paper or oil spray
  2. In a big bowl, we put in the sliced apple and the rest of all the ingredients listed above and mix them well
  3. Then lay the first pastry crust on the baking dish and fill it with the mixture of apple. Spread the cubed butter all over the apple.
  4. Unfold the second pastry over filling trim overhanging edge 1 inch from rim of plate. Fold and roll top edge under lower edge, pressing on rim to seal and cut slits in the top of the pie crust for steam vents.
  5. Cook pie for 35-40 minutes or until crust is golden brown.
  6. Transfer the apple pie to a rack to cool for at least 1 hour. Serve slightly warm or at room temperature garnishing with icing sugar. ENJOY
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CREAMY SMOKED SALMON PASTA

This is One of the easiest, fastest and delicious pasta dish you’ll ever make. This smoked salmon pasta recipe is also filled with fresh flavors of lemon zest and chives.smoked-salmon-1

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yield – 4 portions

Ingredients

  • 1/2 yellow onion (chopped finely)
  • Smoked salmon (cut in to small pieces)
  • A splash of White wine
  • 200ml ( 3/4 cups )Heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Pinch of salt and freshly ground pepper

For the pasta

  • Salted boiling water
  • 400gram Fresh or dry tagliatelle pasta

Garnish

  • Lemon zest
  • Chives

Procedures

    1. Boil the water for the pasta
    2. Heat a non stick sauce pan on a medium heat and Sauté the onion with oil till soft and transparent
    3. Add the salmon and cook till light pink about 3-4 minutes
    4. Now it’s time to add the white wine and let it evaporate on high heat for about 10 seconds, of course stirring continually.
    5. Then lower the heat to medium and add the heavy cream. When it starts to boil at the border of the pan and the cream is hot, add the pasta directly into the pan from the boiling water and mix well
    6. Place on a plate. Garnish with chives and lemon zest. It should be served hot. ENJOY.

SAMBUSA

When I was in Ethiopia, at the time of Ramadan, I used to go to one of my best friend’s house ( Maki) to cook and eat sambusa. Thank you Maki. Now that she is hear in Italy with me we have decided to make a step by step instruction for you guys. We have made it as simple as possible. I hope you will enjoy it as much as we have.

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You can use it as a snack or a side dish. If there is a left over you can put it in a fridge and heat it with a microwave the next day. You can also double or triple the quantity and prepare it until the step of the filling and freeze it up to a month. When needed defrost it overnight in a fridge and fry it.

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I have made mine with a filling of lentils and spiced it up with hot green pepper. Added a coriander leaf only at the last. So I have cooked the lentils in a salted water. Finely chopped the onion, the hot green pepper and the leak and mix all of them together. The fact that we cook only the lentils and use row onion and green pepper gives it a touch of freshness.

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Ingredients

  • 200g(1 and 1/4 cups) flour ( some more for dusting)
  • 150ml( 1/2 cup) salted water
  • oil (for frying)
  • thin paste of flour and water for sealing the filled sambusa

Filling

  • 100g lentils
  • 1/2 small white or red onion (depends on your taste) chopped finely
  • 1 hot green pepper chopped finely
  • 1/4 of a leak cleaned and chopped finely

Procedure

  1. Heat your oven to 150C /302F
  2. In a bowl add the flour and the water mix till homogeneous
  3. Take it out on a working board and knead until smooth (about 8 – 10 minutes)

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4.Divide it in 4 and flatten each like a small disc

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5.Then over the two discs add a little bit of oil and flour then spread well( this helps us to separate the two discs later on )

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6.Take the two discs put them over the other discs roll them out as thin as possible, then put the pair in the oven and cook for 2 minutes then turn it over and cook for another 2 minutes

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7.Take it out separate the two tinned out discs and immediately put it in a plastic bag ( this will keep it steamed so that it wont dry)

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8.Fold each one in long rectangle shape and cut it as small or as big as your desired

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9.In a small dish or cup, mix together the flour and water to make a thin paste. Using one wrapper at a time, fold into the shape of a cone.

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10. Fill the cone with the filling of your choice, close the top, and seal with the paste. Repeat until wraps or filling are used up.

11.Heat the oil to 170 C / 365 F in a deep-fryer or deep heavy pot. There should be enough oil to submerge the wraps. Fry the Sambusa a few at a time until golden brown. Turning it over and over again. Remove carefully to drain on paper towels. ENJOY it while it is hot.

GRILLED PINEAPPLE

Pineapple is delicious on it’s own, but if you want something quick and easy to make for dessert try grilling it. It becomes so testy and spicy. It is also served hot and juicy so it gives it a touch of warmth.If you add a scoop of ice cream, wow you will be satisfied.
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There are so many ways you can use pineapples to flavor your meals and it is so easy to make and adds a ton of flavor. I know it is winter but I decided to add a touch of summer in the middle of winter and it worked. Me, my family and a dear friend of mine who came to visit us from Finland (Maki) have enjoyed it sooooo much. And I am sure you will too.
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The lemon juice will help to cut some of the sweets, if you decided to go sweet all the way by all means don’t use the the lemon juice.
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Ingredients

  • 1 fresh pineapple ( peeled, cut and cored)
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 4 small cubbed butter
  • splash of white wine
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • pinch of salt

procedure

  1. In a big bowl add the maple syrup, the cinnamon, the white wine, pinch of salt mix very well then add the pineapple again mix till every part of the pineapple is covered and refrigerate for 30 minutes
  2. preheat grilled pan( preferably the one with a cover) for medium heat
  3. when it is hot enough trough the cubbed butter and immediately put the pineapple wedges on the grill ( don’t wait till the butter is burned)
  4. when the pineapple is heated trough, 5-7 minutes add the rest of the marinate from the bowl and the lemon juice in to the grill and cover your grill so that the steam will soften the pineapple
  5. after a minute you are done. Serve hot and ENJOY.

CINNAMON AND VANILLA COOKIES

Late Christmas cookies, finally they are here. These rich cinnamon and vanilla cookies are great for the holidays or anytime you want a tasty cinnamon treat. They are so delicious, and have the best texture. They are so fast to put together too!

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 These cookies are always a hit when I make them at home. Two days and they are all gone. You can yield about 50 medium cookies.

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Yield– more than 50 cookies

Ingredients

  • 200g (7/8 cup) butter
  • 115g ( 1/2 cup  ) sugar
  • 1 egg ( separated)
  • 2 egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 400g (3 1/3 cups) flour + some for dusting
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

procedure

  1. Preheat oven to 150c/302F and cover the backing tray with parchment paper or cooking spray
  2. Now we are going to start by mixing the butter and the sugar in a big bowl.
  3.  in another bowl beat the eggs with the vanilla, lemon zest, pinch of salt and baking powder mix well
  4. separate the mixture in half using another bowl
  5. mix half of the flour( 200g or 1 2/3 cups)with the first half of the butter mixture and when mixed well and becomes a dough roll with a film and put in the fridge for 30minutes
  6. for the remaining second half of the butter mixture put in the cinnamon mix well and gradually add the rest of the flour. when mixed thoroughly roll with a film and put in the fridge for half an hour
  7. when the dough run its course,take out the first half and roll it out 1/2 an inch thick on the counter with a little bit of flour.
  8. cut the dough with the cookie cutter with the shape of your desire and spread on the cooking tray and cook for 25 minutes
  9. do the same operation for the second dough
  10. when done leave 10 minutes to cool and ENJOY.

TIRAMISU

Tiramisu literally means pick me up. And trust me it dose, from what ever situation you are in and you need some thing to lift you up, it could be your go to sweet. In my opinion tiramisu is Italian’s most favorite dessert. I have no doubt in my mind about that.

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It is considered a semifreddo (a dessert served cold, but not frozen). This dessert has many variations, the only constant ingredient being the mascarpone cheese. But there is no tiramisu like the original. I have made my version more light by adding the heavy cream. It really makes a difference.

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This is a great make-ahead recipe, since the cake tastes better the longer it sits. At the moment we finish making it the biscuits are going to be still hard and the cream a little bit warm. By the time it run its course in the fridge the biscuits will be soft and the cream as cold as it is supposed to  be. Now you will garnish it with unsweetened cocoa powder and ……..

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Ingredients

  • 4 medium eggs ( separated)
  • 5 tablespoon white sugar
  • 500g (2 and 1/4 cups) mascarpone cheese
  • 200ml ( 3/4 cups) heavy cream
  • pinch of salt
  • 1kg ( 1,000g) savoyardi biscuits
  • enough coffee for socking the savoyardi biscuits ( useful tip:the coffee must be cold or else it will ruin the tiramisu cream)

Garnish

  • enough unsweetened cocoa powder to sprinkle over the tiramisu

Procedure

  1. we are going to use a 2 and 1/2 quarts or 9 inch square baking dish with out any parchment paper or oil spray
  2. beat the egg yolks with the sugar till creamy, of course using an electric mixer
  3. add the mascarpone cheese and mix well with the mixer. It has to be without lumps
  4. In another bowl add the heavy cream and with the mixer mix it till stiff
  5. add it to the previous mixture and with a spatula, by hand, mix them till homogeneous
  6. mount the white of the egg using the mixer with a pinch of salt till stiff
  7. then little by little mix the white with the cream
  8. now your cream for tiramisu is done
  9. on the prepared square baking dish first spread the cream on the bottom then sock the savoyardi biscuit( 1 second for each side), one at a time, in the coffee and arrange on top of the cream.
  10. like this go on till you run out of the cream and refrigerate at least for 2 hour
  11. serve sprinkling the cocoa powder, further from its aesthetic value, it will balance the sweetness of the cream with the bitterness of the cocoa powder. So it is better if you use the cocoa and then ENJOY.

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TENERINA OR BROWNIE

Tenerina or Brownie? So, after testing this succulent, fudgy and delicious tenerina or brownie you can decide what to call it for your self. For me it is a hybrid. It has got that richness and tenderness that a tenerina should have and the chewy, moist and gooey any good brownie is suppose to offer us. But ether way I love it and my family loves it. For me that is what matters.

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With this sweetness by my side I am going to have the best Christmas ever. On top of that you can freeze it too, I recommend with out the frosting.  Just wrap the whole (with out cutting it to pieces) in a layer of foil and another layer of film and freeze up to a month or two.

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Ingredients

  • 400g (2 and 1/4cups) dark chocolate
  • 150g unsalted butter
  • 4 medium eggs( separated)
  • 150 caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 teaspoon white flour
  • pinch of salt

Frosting

  • 55g (1/4cups) softened butter
  • 45g (3/8cups) confectioners sugar
  • 45g (3/8cups) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 45ml (3/8 cups) hot water
  • 75g ( 3/8cups ) dark chocolate chips
  • splash of hot water

procedure

  1. preheat oven at 150C/ 302F
  2. Line with baking/parchment paper a 2 and 1/2 quarts or 9 inch square baking dish and set aside(using the parchment paper will help to take it out of the baking dish easly)
  3. In a double boiler melt the chocolate and the butter
  4. In the mean time beat the egg yolk and the sugar with an electric mixer( useful tip: every time you mix egg yolk and sugar it is better to add a little bit at a time and beat it till creamy white)
  5. Add the vanilla and the flour mix well again
  6. now if the chocolate is melted completely take it off from the heat mix it well with the butter till smooth and homogeneous
  7. let it cool a little bit
  8. mean while beat the white of the egg with a pinch of salt ( useful tip: always wash the——-very well before using it to mount the whites )
  9. now mix the the cooled chocolate with the yolk when finished mix the white with the rest of the mixture a little bit at a time and always from the bottom to the top

Frosting

  1. beat the softened butter and the icing sugar till creamy
  2. In a bowl mix the cocoa powder with the hot water
  3. In a double boiler melt the dark chocolate with a splash of hot water
  4. at the end mix all of them together and set aside for 10 minutes
  5. then pour on the tenerina/ brownie, cut and ENJOY.