December 30, 2009

quick ideas - mascarpone and brandy custard for pandoro or panettone


after a polish christmas speciality from the last post - keks, i would like to share with you a very christmas/new year's eve italian recipe for mascarpone custard for panettone or pandoro (or even alone). it's easy and quick to prepare and will make your holiday sweeter :) it's one of my quick ideas because i believe it can be also a last minute recipe (for some unexpected guests for example). the idea comes from my friend valeria - she prepared it for me the first time and it was realy delicious!

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dopo una specialità natalizia polacca - keks, vorrei condividere con voi una ricetta molto italiana, tipica per il natale/capodanno - la crema al mascarpone da accompagnare il panettone o il pandoro (o da servire da sola). è facile e veloce da preparare e renderà le vostre vacanze natalizie più dolci :) è una delle mie quick ideas (idee veloci) perchè credo che possa essere considerata una ricetta last minute (per gli ospiti inattesi, per esempio). l'idea viene dalla mia amica valeria - me l'ha prearata lei per la prima volta ed è stata una delizia!

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po polskiej swiatecznej specjalnosci - keksie, chcialabym podzielic sie z wami wloskim przepisem, typowym na swieta i sylwestra - kremem z mascarpone do panettone lub pandoro (lub podana bez dodatkow). jest prosty i szybki do przygotowania i sprawi, ze wasze swiateczne wakacje beda jeszcze slodsze :) zaliczam ten przepis do moich quick ideas (szybkich pomyslow) poniewaz uwazam, ze moze byc on traktowany jako przepis last minute (dla niezapowiedzianych gosci na przyklad). pomysl pochodzi od mojej kolezanki valeri - to ona przygotowalam mi ten krem po raz pierwszy i byl naprawde pyszny!



you will need, vi servirà, bedziecie potrzebowac:

- 300g (10 oz.) of macarpone cheese, sera mascarpone
- 3 eggs, uova, jajka
- 3 tablespoons (cucchiai, lyzki) of sugar, zucchero, cukru
- 2 tablespoons (cucchiai, lyzki) of brandy (or other liqueur), brandy (o un altro liquore), brandy (lub innego likieru)

divide egg yolks from whites and mix well the yolks with sugar (util the mixture becomes light and dense). soften the mascarpone with a wooden spoon and add slowly the yolk mixture. add the liqueur and mix well. beat the half of egg whites (until they are completely white and quite still) and add carefully to the mixture. your custard is ready! keep it in the fridge before serving.
attention: contains row eggs!

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dividete i tuorli dagli albumi e mescolate bene i tuorli con lo zucchero (finchè la crema non diventi chiara e densa). ammorbidite il mascarpone con un cucchiaio di legno e aggiungete lentamente i tuorli. aggiungete subito il liquore e mescolate bene. sbattete la metà degli albumi (fino a quando diventino compleamente bianchi e fermi) e aggiungete con attenzione alla crema. la crema è pronta! mettetela in frigo prima di servire.
attenzione: contiene uova crude!

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rozdzielcie zoltka od bialek i ubijcie zoltka z cukrem (az stana sie jasne i geste). wymieszajcie mascarpone drewniana lyzka by stalo sie miekkie i dodajcie powoli zoltka. dodajcie likier i wymieszajcie. ubijcie bialka (do czasu az stana sie zupelnie biale i sztywne) i dodajcie uwaznie do kremu. wasz krem jest gotowy! przechowywujcie go w lodowce przed podaniem.
uwaga: zawiera surowe jajka!

December 28, 2009

keks - polish christmas candied fruit cake


some tastes and scents remind you christmas, wherever you are. in my case christmas tastes are piernik (ginger bread), seromak (poppy and cheese cake) and keks of couse (candied fruits cake). these cakes, much more than a typical italian panettone (even if i live in italy now) are my favourites for christams and simply make me feel better! i'm in warsaw now and my mom baked all of these cakes. here for you the first recipe for a wonderful keks! hope you'll like it :)

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alcuni sapori e profumi ci fanno pensare al natale, ovunque noi siamo. nel mio caso questi sapori sono piernik (ginger bread), seromak (cheesecake con semi di papavero) e ovviamente keks (torta di frutta candita). questi dolci, molto di più del tipico panettone italiano (anche se vivo in italia ormai) sono i miei preferiti per il natale e mi fanno semplicemente star meglio! sono a varsavia in questi giorni e mia mamma ha fatto tutti questi dolci. ecco per voi il magnifico keks! spero vi piacerà :)

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niektore smaki i zapachy przypominaja nam swieta, gdziekolwiek bysmy nie byli. w moim przypadku te smaki to piernik, seromak i oczywiscie keks. te ciasta, bardziej niz typowe wloskie panettone (choc mieszkam teraz we wloszech) to moje ulubione na swieta, te ktore sprawiaja, ze czuje sie lepiej! jestem w warszawie w tych dniach i moja mama upiekla wszystkie te ciasta. oto dla was wspanialy keks! mam nadzieje, ze bedzie wam smakowal :)



you will need, vi servirà, bedziecie potrzebowac:

- 350g (12oz.) of flour, farina, maki
- 250g (9oz.) of butter, burro, masla
- 200g (7oz.) of sugar, zucchero, cukru
- 5 eggs, uova, jajek
- 1 teaspoon (cucchiaino, lyzeczke) of baking soda, lievito, proszku do pieczenia
- 200g (7oz.) of mixed candied fruits, frutta candita mista, roznych kandyzowanych owocow

preheat the oven to 180°C (360°F). melt the butter. mix well the eggs with sugar (until the mixture becomes light and dense), add slowly the butter. mix the flour with baking soda and add slowly to the egg mixture. add candied fruits and mix again. put the mixture in a plum cake baking pan (well buttered or covered with baking paper). bake for about 50 minutes.  

now enjoy with a lovely cup of winter tea!

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riscaldare il forno a 180°C (360°F). far sciogliere il burro. unire le uova con lo zucchero (fino a quando il preparato diventi chiaro e denso), aggiungere lentamente il burro. mecolare la farina con il lievito e aggiungere  lentamente al preparato. aggiungere la frutta candita e mesolare ancora. trasferire in uno stampo da plum cake (ben burrato oppure foderato con la carta da cucina). cuocere per ca. 50 minuti.

adesso assaggiatelo con una tazza di buon té invernale!

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rozgrzac piec do 180°C (360°F). rozpuscic maslo. utrzec jajka z cukrem (az do momento jak stana sie jasne i geste), dodac powoli rozpuszczone maslo. wymieszac dokladnie make z proszkiem do pieczenia i dodac powoli do mieszanki. dodac owoce kandyzowane i dokladnie wymieszac. wlac do formy keksowej (lub plum cake) (dokladnie wysmarowanej maslem lub wylozonej papierem do pieczenia). piec przez ok. 50 minut.

teraz skosztujcie z filizanka zimowej herbaty!


December 22, 2009

let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!



my dear friends,
i wish you joy, peace and lots of snowflakes! merry merry christmas and let it snow!
justyna

December 18, 2009

my christmas house


christmas time is just around the corner! next week at this time i will be spending a lovely time with my family in warsaw or in our sweet country house (the place where i grew up)! i just can't wait for it! my mom told me yesterday that warsaw is completely white, all covered with a lovely, candid snowflakes! a real white christmas? hopefully it will be the same the next week and until january when i will have to leave...

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il natale è già alle porte! la prossima settimana starò con la mia famiglia a varsavia o nella nostra splendida casa di campagna (dove sono cresciuta)! non vedo l'ora! mia mamma mi diceva ieri che varsavia è completamente bianca, tutta coperta con una bellissima e candida neve! un vero bianco natale? speriamo che sarà così anche la prossima settimana e fino a gennaio quando dovrò partire...

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swieta juz za rogiem! w przyszlym tygodniu bede spedziac czas z moja rodzina w warszawie albo w naszym wspanialym domu na wsi (w ktorym spedzilam dziecinstwo)! juz nie moge sie doczekac! moja mama mowila mi wczoraj, ze warszawa jest przykryta sniegiem! prawdziwe biale swieta? miejmy nadzieje, ze utzryma sie do przyszlego tygodnia a najlepiej do stycznia kiedy bede musiala wyjechac...


even if i will be away for 2 weeks my italian house is ready for christmas as well! we have a lovely christmas tree (here admired by our sweet shared kitten) full of traditional (and maybe a little bit vintage) decorations and some presents already under it! did the santa claus came down through the fireplace? i guess so because our christams tree is just next to it!

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anche se vado via per 2 settimane anche la mia casa italiana è pronta per il natale. abbiamo un bellissimo albero (ammirato dalla nostra splendida gattina in condivisione) pieno di addobbi tradizionali (e un po' vintage) e qualche regalo già sotto l'albero! ma il babbo natale è sceso giù dal camino? credo proprio di si perchè l'albero sta proprio vicino!

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chociaz wyjezdzam na 2 tygodnie rowniez moj wloski dom jest przystrojony na swieta. mamy sliczna choinke (na zdjeciu powyzej podziwiana przez nasza wspaniala kotke) pelna tradycyjnych (i troche vintage) ozdob oraz pierwsze prezenty! czy swiety mikolaj wszedl do nas przez kominek? chyba tak bo choinka stoi tuz obok niego!


i found some lovely vintage present tags with kittens, aren't they beautiful? i aslo made some "craft" decorations like that for the candel holder below, nothing special but made with love! for me christmas time colours are white, red and green - the most beautiful and cozy colours for the most wonderful time of the year!

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ho trovato questi bellissimi bilglietti vintage con i gattini per i regali, non vi sembrano deliziosi? ho anche fatto qualche decorazione "artigianale" come quella di porta candela sotto, nulla di speciale ma fatta con l'amore!
per me i colori di natale sono bianco, rosso e verde - i colori più belli e accoglienti per questo meraviglioso periodo dell'anno!

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znalazlam te slodkie vintage-bileciki do prezentow, czyz nie wydaja wam sie sliczne? zrobilam rowniez "wlasorecznie" niektore ozdoby swiateczne, na przyklad dokoracje swiecznika ponizej, nic specjalnego ale zrobione z miloscia! dla mnie swiateczne kolry to bialy, czerwony i zielony - najpiekniejsze i najprzytulniejsze kolory na ten najwspanialszy okres w roku!


December 17, 2009

banana, cinnamon and chocolate chips muffins


after the yummy recipe for almond and chocolate chips cookies that i baked for my parents last weekend here for you another delicious idea for a lovely winter breakfast (or teatime!). i love all kinds of muffins but the banana muffins are in my opinion simply the best! i love the mix of bananas and cinnamon (especially in the winter). this time i decided to add also chocolate chips (chocolate and bananas - mmmm....) so, would you like to try it? if yes you will need:

- 1 mature, medium size banana
- 135 g (4,7 oz.) of flour
- 155 g (5,5 oz.) of sugar
- 40 g (1,5 oz.) of melted butter
- 1 egg
- 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon of baking soda
- a pinch of salt

preheat the oven to 180°C (360°F). squash the banana with a fork. in a bowl mix well the egg with sugar (better if with an electric mixer) and add slowly the melted butter. in another bowl mix flour with salt, baking soda and cinnamon. mix gently dry ingredients with the egg/butter mixture and add the banana. avoid mixing for a long time (less you mix more your muffins will be soft). put in the muffin pans and bake for ca. 25 minutes!



December 15, 2009

almond and chocolate chips cookies



inspired by federica from sweet as a candy and her delicious recipe for hazelnut and chocolate cookies (check here the recipe) i decided to bake some cookies by myself! my parents were here in milan in the weekend so i needed something yummy for our sunday breakfast. i made some almond cookies and banana muffins as well (banana muffins recipe is coming soon ;). hope you will like it (i need to admitt that my cookies came out really delicious!).

you will need (for ca. 16 cookies):

-180 g (6,3 oz.) of flour
-1 teaspoon of baking soda
-80 g (ca 3 oz. of) almond leafs (or chopped almonds)
-50 g (1,8 oz.) of chopped chocolate (or chocolate chips)
-150 g (5,3 oz.) of melted butter
-120 g (4,3 oz.) of sugar (white and brown mixed would be the best)
-1 egg

mix well the egg with sugar (better if with an electric mixer), add melted butter and mix again. in another container mix the flour with baking soda. add slowly the egg-butter mixture to the flour and mix with a wooden spoon. add almonds and chocolate chips and mix again for a short while. you can also add few drops of almond aroma. leave under the kitchen towel for about 40-60 minutes (your mixture will become more firm). preheat the oven to 180°C (360°F). make small balls and put them on the baking paper (keep the distance as the cookies will extend a lot in the oven). bake for ca. 15 minutes or until your cookies are brown. leave for cooling and enjoy with a cup of fruity christmas tea or with a morning cappuccino!


i hope you will like it (as we did) and thank you for inspiration federica!

December 10, 2009

my swiss weekend and hanselmann's chocolate


i spent a lovely long weekend in switzerland (that's why i missed some posts recently) - we traveled with the train through the highest mountains in this charming country (up to 2235m!) and through the beautiful mountain towns like chur and saint moritz. a part the breathtaking views and peaceful and relaxing atmosphere our journey was full of excellent dining. i didn't know much about the traditional swiss cuisine but i must admit that it's really excellent! i loved fondue and rosti very much (i need to try to make it by myself and share the recipe with you:), but the best thing in switzerland is chocolate... we spent some hours in saint moritz and after a long walk around its beautiful lake we had a lovely cup of tea at hanselmann (the most famous place in saint moritz) and a lovely box full of chocolates that i brought to milan (you can see it above). below hanselmann's caffè and confiserie and my precious box!

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ho passato un bellissimo ponte in svizzera (per quello da un po' che non mi facevo sentire) - abbiamo viaggiato con il treno attraverso le più alte montagne di questo affascinante paese (fino a 2235m!) e attraverso le bellissime cittadine di montagna come chur e saint moritz. a parte le viste davvero mozzafiato e un'atmosfera di pace e relax il nostro viaggio era caratterizzato da un ottimo ristoro. non sapevo tanto della tradizionale cucina svizzera ma devo ammettere che è davvero squisita! mi è piaciuto tantissimo il fondue e il rosti (devo provare a farli e condividere la ricetta con voi:), ma la cosa migliore in svizzera è il cioccolato... abbiamo passato qualche ora a saint moritz e dopo una lunga passeggiata intorno al suo bellissimo lago abbiamo preso una tazza di té da hanselmann (il posto più famoso a saint moritz) e una deliziosa scatola piena di cioccolatini che ho portato a milano (potete vederli sopra). sotto il caffè e la cioccolateria di hanselmann e la mia preziosa scatola!

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spedzilam wspanialy dlugi weekend w szwajcarii (dlatego od jakiegos czasu nic nie pisalam)-podrozowalismy pociagiem przez najwyzsze gory w tym czarujacym kraju (az do 2235m!) i przez sliczne gorskie miasteczka takie jak chur i saint moritz. poza zatykajacymi dech w piersiach widokami i spokojna, relaksujaca atmosfera, nasza podroz byla pelna wpanialej kuchni. nie wiedzialam wiele na temat tradycyjnej kuchni szwajcarskiej ale musze przyznac, ze jest naprawde wysmienita! najbardziej smakowalo mi fondue i rosti (musze sprobowac przyzadzic je w domu i podzielic sie z wami przepisami ;), ale najlepsza rzecza w szwajcarii jest czekolada... spedzilismy kilka godzin w saint moritz i po dlugim spacerze nad pieknym jeziorem zafundowalismy sobie filizanke herbaty u hanselmanna (najpopularniejszym miejscu w saint moritz) oraz wspaniale pudelko pelne czekoladek, ktore przywiozlam ze soba do mediolanu (mozecie zobaczyc je na zdjeciu powyzej). ponizej kawiarnia i sklep z czekolada u hanselmanna oraz moje cenne pudelko!


walking along the streets of zurich's beautiful old town i admired lovely confiseries and tousands of inviting chocolate jewels. all the shop windows were already decorated for christmas and looked very beautiful!

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camminando lungo le strade della bellissima città vecchia di zurigo ho ammirato squisite confiseries e migliaia di invitanti gioilelli di cioccolateria. tutte le vetrine erano già decorate per il natale, davvero bellissime!

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spacerujac wzdluz uliczek pieknego stargo miasta w zurychu podziwialam wpaniale confiseries i tysiace czekoladowych skarbow. wszystkie witryny sklepowe byly juz przystrojone na boze narodzenie i wygladaly przeslicznie!


beautiful views and calm winter atmosphere. below you can see some shots taken during our travel with the train and our long and relaxing walks on the snow. don't you think that switzerland is really a beautiful country? i truly felt in love with it.

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un bellissimo panorama e una calma atmosfera invernale. sotto potete vedere alcuni scatti fatti durante il nostro viaggio con il treno e durante le nostre lunge e rilassanti passeggiate sulla neve. non credete che svizzera è davvero un paese splendido? io mi sono veramente innamorata.

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piekne widoki i spokojna zimowa atmosfera. ponizej mozecie zobaczyc kilka zdjec zrobionych podczas naszej podrozy pociagiem i podczas dlugich i relaksujacych spacerow po sniegu. czy szwajcaria nie wydaje sie wam naprawde piekna? ja zakochalam sie w tym kraju.


i hope to return the next year and already can't wait for it!

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spero di tornare l'anno prossimo e già non vedo l'ora!

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mam nadzieje, ze wroce tam w przyszlym roku i juz nie moge sie doczekac!



December 02, 2009

crepe gratin


i found this recipe in the last issue of my favourite weekend magazine (io donna), i modified it a little and prepared for sunday lunch. it takes about an hour to cook it but its worth of some effort - you will agree with me after trying it ;) i think that everybody loves crepes. i love both sweet and salty (the nutella crepe is one of my favourites sins - the best way to get it, in my opinion, is as a fast food - take a way, or eat-it-when-you-walk-along-the-streets-of-milan, can you imagine something better?). ok, but now let stop thinking about nutella!! we have a lunch meal here to prepare!

you will need (for four portions):

the filling:
- 400 g (14 oz.) of fresch spinach
- 250 g (1 cup) of ricotta cheese (or similar fresh cheese)
- 50 g (2 oz.) of grana padano (or pecorino) + 20 g (1 oz.) to sprinkle on the top
- 2 tabelspoons of pine nuts
- 2 tablespoons of butter + some for the top
- 1 tabelspoon of olive oil
- salt, peper, garlic and nutmeg

the pastry:
- 3 eggs
- 4 tablespoons of flour
- 250ml (1 cup) of milk
- 2 tablespoons of butter
- salt

mix the eggs with flour, milk, salt and melted butter. fry the crepes in a buttered pan - 9/10 crepes are needed. boil spinach leaves in salted water for about 5 minutes. strain well and mince with a blender. melt the butter, olive oil and garlic in a pan. add minced spinach and nutmeg. leave on fire until the butter and oil drawn in the spinach, take away the garlic and turno off the fire. add ricotta (or similar) cheese and grated grana padano. add salt and peper if needed. mince pine nuts in a mortar and add to the mixture. as in the picture below spread the mixture on each crepe and roll them up. cut each crepe in 6/8 pieces (depens on how big they are) and put (vertically) in a well buttered pan. put some butter flakes on the top and sprinkle with grana or pecorino. bake in the already hot oven (200°C - 390°F) for about 15 minutes. enjoy!



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