Tag: cooking

Elderberry flowers: properties, recipes and cooking tips – Italian Cuisine


Elderberry flowers are fried in batter and used to prepare a fragrant syrup, to try with beer or sparkling wine, for intriguing cocktails, in fruit salad and on ice cream

THE elderberry flowers they bloom in May and are harvested when the pistil is still fresh. They can be found in the open countryside, where the air is clean and they color the roadsides with small white flowers, which appear together in umbrellas facing downwards (left image), in this case we speak of Sambucus negro. You have to be very careful, because in nature they exist variety are similar though poisonous for humans, as in the case of Sambucus ebulus, which has irregular inflorescence, with white flowers from pointed petals is pink or red stamens (right image), so if you are not more than sure that they are edible, do not collect them.

Elderberry flowers: properties

Elderberry flowers, as well as their fruits, are edible and rich in beneficial properties, among the main therapeutic uses, elderberry works with function: diuretic, emollient, antineuralgal, laxative, diaphoretic (promotes sweating), hematic, antirheumatic, purifying and stimulating bronchial secretion. It is prepared in the form of extract, as brew or decoction.

Elderflower herbal tea

There elderflower herbal tea strengthens the immune system, it is useful against cough, cold and fever since it stimulates sweating. To prepare it you just need water and elderberry flowers dried, then stock up on elderberry flowers, let them dry in the sun and keep them in an airtight jar to prepare infusions and herbal teas.

Herbal tea ingredients
150 ml of water
2 teaspoons of elderberry flowers

Boil the water in a saucepan and pour two teaspoons of dried elderberry flowers; let it rest for 5 minutes, then strain and drink.

Elderflower syrup

The elderflower syrup is an excellent health ally, rich in vitamins, trace elements and flavonoids it has purifying and draining properties, it helps to relieve the symptoms of cold and fever. If you are following a weight loss diet, a spoon mixed with water, juice and yogurt, taken between meals, is an ideal antidote against nervous hunger.

Syrup ingredients
15-20 elderberry flowers
1.5 l water
4 untreated lemons
sugar
vinegar

Cut 15-20 elderflowers at the base of the umbrella, then without washing them in order not to eliminate the perfume, put them in a large jar with 4 untreated lemons cut into rings and 1.5 liters of water. Close the jar and let it rest at room temperature for 2-3 days, stirring occasionally. only then the liquid: put one colander on a saucepan, line it with a canvas and pour all the contents of the jar; close the tea towel around the flowers and wring to squeeze the juice. Add the same weight of sugar and 50 g of apple cider vinegar to the liquid and boil for 2-3 minutes. Transfer it immediately into bottles filling them up to 1 cm below the edge. Close them and keep them in the fridge. The syrup lasts 2-4 months.

Elderberry flowers fried in batter

THE fried elderberry flowers they will make you dream, they have the consistency of clouds, they are soft and fluffy. You can make both sweet and savory, in batter with or without eggs, choosing between sparkling water or beer. If you prefer a thicker batter use eggs, otherwise for a lighter version try without. The choice between carbonated water and beer depends on your taste, to feel all the scent of elderflower, natural, use sparkling water if not for a richer flavor flavor opt for beer. We preferred one full-bodied batter but that would leave room for the flavor of elderberries, with eggs and sparkling water.

Batter for 20 elderberry flowers
150 g 00 flour
200 g sparkling water
2 egg whites
1 yolk
salt
pepper

Whip 2 egg whites and aside, in another bowl, pour water, flour, 1 yolk and mix well with a whisk to obtain a velvety and lump-free consistency. Add the beaten egg whites a little at a time and stir until the batter is not smooth and frothy. Season with salt and pepper. Dip the elderberries in the batter and fry them in plenty of hot peanut oil. Drain on kitchen paper and serve with a pinch of salt.

Sweet elderflower pancakes

The pancakes they are the sweet version of fried elderberries. Prepare with the batter classic crepes, but with the addition of a pinch of sugar and a dusting after frying.

Sweet batter ingredients
250 g milk
100 g flour
2 eggs
salt
sugar
icing sugar

Collect 2 eggs in a bowl and shuffle with flour, a pinch of salt and sugar. Then, working with the whisk, exotically the mixture the milk until you get a rather batter liquid and lump-free. Dip the elderberries in the pancake batter and fry them in plenty of hot peanut oil. Drain on kitchen paper and serve with a sprinkling of icing sugar.

Panaché

The beer mix most popular is definitely beer and gazzosa, the classic mixed beer, but you can pour 2 tablespoons of syrup in a mug of beer and create a very pleasant panaché. Try it also in sparkling wine, keeping the same proportions, 2 tablespoons of syrup for wine glass.

Hugo cocktail, the elderflower drink

The Hugo cocktail, for Hugo friends, it's a slightly alcoholic drink, fragrant and fresh, for the presence of the elderflower syrup and of mint. A cocktail quick and easy, so you can easily prepare it at home.

Ingredients for 1 drink
60 ml of prosecco
60 ml of soda water (or carbonated water)
30 ml of elderflower syrup
mint (fresh)
ice

Put in a wide chalice several ice cubes. Add the prosecco, the seltz (alternatively you can use a very carbonated water) and the elderflower syrup. Jumbled up all and complete with fresh mint leaves.

3 cooking classes to give for Mother's Day – Italian Cuisine

3 cooking classes to give for Mother's Day


For Mother's Day, give a unique experience: buy a voucher for the courses of La Scuola de La Cucina Italiana. It will be a fun, instructive and above all delicious gift.

Are you looking for the gift perfect for Mother's Day? Choose one of the courses de The Italian Cuisine School. There is no need to be expert in the kitchen; you just need to love cooking and want to learn while having fun. You can also propose a lesson together or wait for an invitation to lunch to test the results of the gift!

you can buy a gift voucher directly online and customize it, choosing the amount and adding a message. Then the person who receives it will choose the course and the date they prefer, to live a unique experience in the kitchens of our school in Milan. Here you can find the complete purchase guide.

We thought of three perfect courses for Mother's Day; Here they are!

Fresh pasta

The fresh pasta course is a complete course, consisting of three lessons, which deals with the basic techniques and secrets for making different types of pasta: from simple pasta, such as tagliatelle and orecchiette, to stuffed pasta, such as agnolotti del plin and tortelli al sea ​​bass. Discover the complete teaching plan here.

Quick menu

Unfortunately, sometimes the time available for cooking is short. In this course, many ideas for an original menu to be prepared in a short time, suitable for both special invitations and everyday meals. Here you will find all the recipes.

Sideboard cakes

The cupboard cakes course is dedicated to the delights to be made in the home oven to the delight of young and old. The recipes prepared are lemon cake, pistachio and cocoa frangipane tart, apple tarte tatin, ricotta and fruit slice, pear cake. Do you already feel the perfume?

If the gift is also from the little ones, you can buy a voucher for one family workshop: two hours dedicated to fun, to learn how to make many delicious recipes together.

Obviously, there are other monothematic courses dedicated to the best of Italian cuisine, including Risotti, First courses of fish, Spoon desserts, Pastry mignon or other novelties, such as the course dedicated to Spanish specialties Paella & Co.

The La Cucina Italiana School will resume its activities as soon as possible, adapting to the official indications. To stay up to date, consult the course section directly here; for any information or need you can write an email to scuola@gordon-ramsay-recipe.com.

Cooking school: almond, from appetizer to dessert – Italian Cuisine

Cooking school: almond, from appetizer to dessert


Almond is an excellent ally in the kitchen, because it is versatile and suitable for numerous preparations.

The almond is recognized among the traditional Italian agri-food products as a typical Sicilian product, present on the menu from appetizer to dessert, with pastas, bruschettas, salads, breadings, but also ice cream, milk, marzipan, martorana fruit or nougat. As an alternative to the preparations that you can do simply at home, give yourself a Sicilian tour: the show of spring flowering is truly a joy for the eyes.

The almond through the whole menu

Sweet and bitter, crunchy or pasty, light or dark, all almond-based preparations are wonderful. Among the lesser known, there is breading for various fries or for fish and crusted meat: just blend it more or less fine depending on the consistency you want to obtain. During her season, however, it is better to leave her fresh as it is very soft, then peel and peel it and then accompany it with fresh salads or as a side dish for a steamed fish. In desserts, the use is almost infinite, from the best known Marzipan, with almonds, flour, sugar and eggs, used by the Etruscans and Romans as a votive food, until Nougat, whose paternity we still contend with France and Spain.

How to prepare almond milk at home

Making almond milk at home is very simple: simply soak the peeled almonds in boiling water for a day, then pass them with theextractor, or blend them in a blender with very little filtered water. This milk, if boiled, tends to thicken and remember almost one fresh cream, ideal to be used again in salty as a sauce for a ravioli or even for a steamed or roasted steak.

How to use almond flour

Almond flour also has a good one versatility in the kitchen, excellent for cakes and biscuits, where it retains more moisture giving a softness greater than all our desserts. If we are interested in a more bitter taste we should use the almond Ermellina, but be careful: ingested in large quantities it can become toxic to the body.

The almond in the dishes of the great chefs

They could not remain impassive in front of the charm of the almond great chefs as Andrea Berton, who proposed a delicious almond cream with pumpkin, apples and goat milk, or Pino Cuttaia in La Madia di Licata with its masterful almond and basil soup. In short, there is just to indulge in this oily fruit, which is also rich in vitamin E, mineral salts and proteins.

A curiosity about martorana fruit based on almond

There martorana fruit it was created for the first time by the nuns of the Palermo convent dedicated to the noblewoman Eloisa Martorana, hence the name, to honor Roger II of Sicily who visited during the winter, when no other fruit was available. After three centuries of activity, at the end of the sixteenth century an edict of the diocesan Synod of Mazara del Vallo sanctioned the nuns, guilty of an activity that was believed to distract them from the proper religious recollection; in fact, there were many other reasons, so much so that after a few months the Sicilian confectioners' guild acquired the monopoly of the recipe of the nuns with the blessing of the Curia.

To learn more recipes, but above all other important cooking techniques, consult our course calendar here: we are waiting for you!

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Texts by Giulia Ubaldi

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