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Home you go … crescionda you find – Italian Cuisine


History, curiosities and infinite variations of a typical dessert of the Spoleto carnival


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Before the flavor I liked the name: crescionda, a term that remains impressed, bombastic and sinuous at the same time, a bit of a fun fair game, a bit of a futurist term, instead it indicates a typical cake of the Spoleto Carnival. How I came across this recipe I don't know, certainly during some of my nocturnal research, and the encounter evoked a memory that remained in a hidden corner of my memory. There was a time when every Sunday my father, who didn't even cook an egg, tried his hand at butter creams and filled two or three-layer cakes with them, soaked with plenty Alchermes. The basics, tall and perfect sponge cake, they came from the hotel institute where my father taught physical education and where his gluttony (surely the two aspects will seem in contradiction) led him to forge not only connections but also friendship with those who taught cooking or pastry techniques including a colleague of Umbrian origin who arrived one day saying: "hold Luciano, I made you a sweet from my land". And so there crescionda arrived home, today I'm sure, I could never forget a name like that. And out of mine onomatopoeic fantasies the meaning is that of "Grows" that is focaccia and "onta" because it was used in the dough old chicken broth, but also olive oil or lard and with these fats the dry bread was soaked by adding the "Schjianci", semi-wild sour apples, eggs and sheep's cheese and honey to sweeten, because it sugar it cost too much. In practice, until the eighteenth century it was a sort of sweet and sour pizza, cooked on the embers of the fireplace if you did not own the oven, made by eye, in two versions, both on the occasion of the Carnival: the "Dorge" or sweet and the "poretta", poor thing with only flour corn, water, eggs and apples. There crescionda modern is the daughter of the nineteenth century when the use of sugar, cocoa and the Mistrà liqueur. Depending on how the ingredients are mixed, the cake changes color and texture, so much so that we can define it as “magical”. But it is only a matter of physics and chemistry. It can be dark if you use cocoa, white with milk and bread, yellow with corn flour. Or it can be of two colors with the macaroons and the milk, the macaroons rise to the surface and the milk remains below or of three colors: amaretti, milk and chocolate. Also changes consistency, if the version is the one that involves separating egg whites and yolks, working these with sugar and whipping the first peaks. Once cooked it will be crunchy on the surface and soft underneath. Because of this specialty, which today is, there are many, indeed many versions so as to feed the Spoleto saying "home that you go crescionda you find ". But what will mine ever be? I just don't remember this.

181781 "src =" https://www.salepepe.it/files/2020/02/laura-maragliano.png "width =" 130 "height =" 171by Laura Maragliano, portrait by Gian Marco Folcolini, photo of the plate by Francesca Moscheni, in the kitchen Claudia Compagni

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The Venice Carnival becomes social (with Spritz and cicchetti at home) – Italian Cuisine

An ancient mask, an authentic Spritz and cicchetti with sardines and cod to celebrate the Venice Carnival even at home and share it on social networks

Due to the ongoing health emergency, this year we will have to give up seeing the elegant masks parading through the streets of Venice for the traditional Carnival of the city that attracts visitors from all over the world. This is why Select, an icon of the Venetian aperitif, launches #TheSocialCarnival, a digital initiative designed to bring, starting from February 16, the Venice Carnival in our home, between history, anecdotes, Spritz and cicchetti.

Bauta, the mask par excellence of the Venice Carnival

The first step to celebrate the Venice Carnival at home is the discovery, through the collaboration with Ca 'Macana, a historic masks workshop since 1986, of the Bauta, Venetian disguise par excellence, typically used during banquets and social events since the 15th century. Thanks to a augmented reality filter available on the Instagram page @selectaperitivoit it will be possible to “wear” this mask and share the celebrations on social networks.

Authentic Venetian Spritz: how to prepare it at home

Once in disguise, all that remains is to prepare a delicious aperitif obviously based on the authentic spritzer Venetian. Here are Select's tips for preparing it: fill a wine glass with ice, pour 7.5 cl of prosecco and 5 cl of Select, fill with 2.5 cl of soda or seltzer and finally garnish with a large green olive.

Venetian Cicchetti, a recipe with sardines and cod

And what to accompany the Spritz with if not greedy ones cicchetti typical Venetians? The proposed recipes provide sardines in saor is creamed cod.

To prepare cicchetti with cod you will need: 500 g of already soaked stockfish, 280 g of extra virgin olive oil, 1 baguette, ½ lemon, 2 bay leaves, 1 clove of garlic, fine salt to taste, black pepper to taste parsley to taste

Proceed as follows: cut the stockfish into slices. Fill a saucepan with cold water and add a clove of garlic, bay leaves and lemon. Add the stockfish and cook for 30 minutes over low heat. Transfer the stockfish into a bowl and add the cooking oil and water until the mixture is homogeneous. Add salt and pepper to taste and garnish with a little parsley and a drizzle of oil. Cut the baguette into slices, arrange a little on each; of cod cream. Serve the cicchetti on a wooden cutting board or on a ceramic plate.

The ingredients for cicchetti with sardines are instead: 600 g of sardines, 500 g of white onion, 1 glass of white wine vinegar, 1 teaspoon of brown sugar, 2 bay leaves, 40 g of raisins, 40 g of pine nuts, 00 flour to taste, 20 ml of oil, salt to taste, pepper to taste

Proceed as follows: clean the onion and slice it into wedges. Leave the onions in a container full of water for 20 minutes. Put the onions in a pan with white wine vinegar. Add the brown sugar and gently sweat the onions over low heat. Separately dip the raisins in water. Bread the sardines already peeled and then fry them in a pan with oil. Let them cool for half an hour.
Arrange the sardines on a wooden cutting board or on a ceramic plate and add the onions, a piece of bay leaf, some
raisins and pine nuts to taste.

How to make Tuscan bread at home – Italian Cuisine

How to make Tuscan bread at home

It is prepared without salt and is perfect to accompany structured dishes or tasty cured meats as those of the tradition of this region are.

It is the unsalted bread, without salt, perfect for highlighting the foods it accompanies. It has a long tradition in Tuscany, where it is thought to have been prepared out of necessity, when around 1100, the Pisans, due to the strong rivalry with Florence, blocked the arrivals of salt at the port, so I think of putting the eternal rival in check. But the Florentines did not lose heart and knead theirs bread without salt. According to another version, however, the habit of making bread in this way derives from the high cost of purchasing salt in Florence, which is why families began to prepare bread without this ingredient. Be that as it may, the result is that this particular type of bread enhances and enhances savory, structured foods with intense flavors.

Two doughs, for a better bread

Preparing bread at home presupposes the availability of time for the preparation of the dough and for the leavening, necessary to obtain a state of the art bread. For Tuscan bread we advise you to prepare one first chariot, an "indirect method" dough, made of flour, water and yeast, which must be left to rise for a long time and then combined with the other ingredients. Using a chariot to prepare bread means obtaining a product softer and more digestible, more fragrant and that can last longer.

Sifting the flour, a very important gesture

Whatever bread you want to make and whatever flour you need, don't forget sift it before adding it to the other ingredients. This quick and easy gesture is very important for the success of your work. Very often the packs of flour are in fact stacked on top of each other, crushed and deprived ofair, so important to create a homogeneous mixture. For this reason, before using it, sift it: in this way the flour will take in the air again and kneading will be more simple.

The ricetta of Tuscan bread


For the chariot: 175 g flour 0, 100 g of water, 1 g of brewer's yeast, a drop of extra virgin olive oil

Dough: the biga, 250 g flour 0, 125 g water.


On a pastry board pour the flour, sifting it. Dissolve the yeast in the water and then start kneading with the flour. Brush the mixture with a drizzle of oil and leave it in a slightly tall container to rise. Cover with a cloth and let the mixture grow, it will take 12 hours. At this point, quickly mix the chariot with the other ingredients, cover with a cloth and let the dough rise for another 6 hours. After this time, take the dough, make a loaf, fold it in two and roll it up on itself. Place it on a floured cloth, sprinkle it with a little flour and let it rise for another hour. Meanwhile, heat the oven to 220 °. Take the pan, put the bread on it trying to handle it as little as possible, and let it cook for 10 minutes. At this point, lower the oven to 180 ° and let it cook for another 40 minutes. Once cooked, take the Tuscan bread out of the oven and let it rest for 15 minutes before cutting it.

Browse the tutorial to find out how to accompany Tuscan bread

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