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Hello guys,

We are back after a long break. Today we would like to take you trough a long journey, which started one morning in Belgium a year ago. One morning Doc woke up and went in the kitchen. I thought he would prepare a coffee. Instead, he took the left over of the Postel beer (Belgian Trappist beer), from the dinner and mixed it with flour. "I would like to prepare my sourdough." He said. I honestly forgot about the cup containing the mixture for a few days. When I did realize, It was hard like a stone. Externally it was hard, while the inside was very soft. I took it and refreshed it using water and flour. Here we go. We are pleased to introduce you to Tiger, our sourdough.

tiger

Since then, Doc specialized in pizza making. He is really good at this.

We use a flour with a content of protein of about 12-13 gr. The amount of water is the 55% of the gr of flour (example for 100 gr of flour add 55 gr of water). 1gr of salt every 100 gr of flour. The amount of sourdough us the 30% of the gr of flour (example for 100 gr of flour add 30 gr of sourdough). 

Prepare the dough and let it rest for a couple of hours. Cover it with plastic paper. Stretch and fold the pizza dough (how to).

We normally prepare 24hrs before. We let it grow in the fridge for all the night and the day. Three hours before you will use it, remove the dough from the fridge.

Stretch the pizza with your hands (How to).

Sunday It is our pizza and movie night. This is what He created yesterday.

PIZZA Margherita.

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PIZZA with parmesan, mozzarella, capocollo, and lemon zest.

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PIZZA with pumpkin, 'Nduja, leek, and mozzarella.

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Pick any one you like and enjoy.

For the music, We are watching "Westworld", which is brilliant by the way. Yesterday the piano was playing "A Forest" by the Cure. I loved the tribute.

 The southern tradition wants fresh pasta with fresh tomato and meat sauce ( O' Ragù) for the Sunday lunch. We could not choose a different song (https://youtu.be/GSWYvqReTH8), by Rita Pavone a brilliant Italian singer.

Once upon a time, a grandma was used to wake up on Sunday and prepare fresh pasta for lunch which would be dressed with tomato sauce “la salsa” prepared using home canned tomatoes. I have a lot of memories from my childhood and O' Ragù. The strongest are having breakfast smelling the tomato on Sunday morning and prepare the canned tomatoes the last days of summer holidays <3<3<3.

Today we would like to prepare fresh pasta with you. Here are our proportions: 1 egg, 80 gr of flour and 20 gr of durum flour (semolina). The secret is to work out the dough, rolling – stretching - thinning, to make possible the formation of the gluten network, which is responsible for the elasticity and the tenderness of the pasta.

Work the dough until pressing a finger into it the print does not stay. Let it rest for 30 minutes in the fridge. Do not loose your heart ... it takes some time and a lot of energy to have a smooth and elastic dough ;)

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Dear friends may we introduce you “nonna papera” alias “Grandma Duck machine”  : -)

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Today we prepare tagliatelle: cut a piece of the dough, sprinkle with flour and pass it trough the machine at number 1. Fold it, turn it of 90° and pass it trough again a couple of time, then slowly move to number 2, 3 and so on until the number 8. It is time to cut.

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For the tomato sauce with meat you need two pans (This is not the traditional recipe that will be included in another article):

1st pan: add the olive oil and chopped onion and slightly fry. Include the san Marzano tomatoes cut in peace and let it cook.

2nd pan: olive oil and meat – minced meat, sausages, or veal in pieces. Let it sautè and add red wine. Once the alcohol evaporates, combine the meat and the tomato sauce. 

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Buon appetito.

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The first time I saw the white witloof (dutch), alias chicory, I did not imagine how to cook it. Honestly, I mean it.

Anyway, I put it in my shopping cart wondering what to do with it. With time I experimented a lot and gained more and more expertise in cooking it. Since I just cited “From Brussels with love”, a collection of tracks assembled by the Belgian Les Disques du Crépuscule in 1980, have a listen to Airwaves by Thomas Dolby (https://youtu.be/rP1RTAft_B8).

    Here is a nice risotto recipe for two.

    100 gr of rice

    4 chicories (this time we bought it small, you may add less or more depending on the size)

    ½ onion

    Vegetable stock

    Curry

    Salt

Chop the onion and sauté them in olive oil. Cut the chicory in half, remove the hard white core part to minimize the bitterness, and chop the leaves. Add it to the onion and lightly fry. Include also the rice and toast it slightly. Cook the rice adding the vegetable stock.

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Once
the rice is ready, add the curry, the parmesanand the salt. Does it taste good? Eet smakelijk.

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Summer is coming and by tradition, Italians going to the beach taking with them food for the morning break, lunch, afternoon break and so on. What a stereotype?!?! We do need the energy to swim, play with beach racket, volleyballs, footballs …. Even simply to get some tan having the belly full. To enter the right mood here is Mina from 1963: video

Here is the recipe for two people

100 gr of couscous

100 gr of water

½ onion

1 eggplant (aubergine)

1 pepper

Olives

1 lemon

Fresh mint

Chop the onion, eggplant, the pepper, and the olives. Lightly fry the onion, the eggplant, and the pepper, as last the olives.

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Once the vegetables are cooked, squeeze the juice of one lemon.

Boil 100 gr of water and add the couscous, let it boil for 4 minutes while it absorbed the water and put it apart. Shell the couscous with a fork and olive oil.

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Mix, add fresh mint and have a nice sunny day.

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Cooking this dish stress me out. It is a very simple recipe but since it is one of the favorite dishes of Doc and “only my mother cooks it right” …. You know!!! I feel like beeing always a bit under exam (uffa) …. I am working hard to get it perfect, and I often let Doc do it.

Mushrooms are not actually part of ingredients; I think the name of the dish comes from the shape of the chopped aubergine.

Take the aubergine and cut it in small pieces. Deep fry in olive oil and once are slightly brown dry out the excess oil (see pics).

Gulp J I forgot the music. Still on time, here you have the talking heads with the girlfriend is better.

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Now let’s Prepare the tomato sauce. Heat the olive oil in a pan with an unpeeled garlic clove (aglio in camicia – literally translate is garlic with shirt) after a couple of minutes remove the garlic. At this point add chopped tomatoes (better if cherry tomatoes). Keep stirring and let it cook with a very gentle flame and let it boil for some time. Usually, it is better if you let dry out the water to increase the viscosity of the sauce. This long boiling in our “mother-dialect “ ( Napoletano) is termed p’ppeare J.

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It is very simple, HANDY and TASTY … It is a good starter as well as a good side dish …. Buon appetito!!!

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