May 24, 2010

Italian sunday

what a lovely morning...

i can see through my windows again (since i cleaned them yesterday)... so enjoying the sunshine streaming in, along with a cup of steaming hot café au lait and some cantuccini biscotti i baked yesterday.

besides chocolate chip cookies and ginger biscuits, nutty cantuccini are also one of my favorites.

i adapted a recipe by Tessa Kiros from her book TWELVE like so:



60 gr softened butter
250 gr golden caster sugar
2 large eggs
zest of 1 lemon
400 gr plain flour
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
75 gr almonds with skin still on
75 gr pistachios
50 gr chopped candied peel in all colors
3 tablespoons of vin santo or marsala wine


1. pre-heat the oven to 180°C
2. beat the butter and sugar until creamy
3. beat in the eggs and lemon zest
4. add the sifted flour and baking powder along with a pinch of salt
5. then work in the nuts and the candied peel and the wine
6. lightly flour your worktable and hands and roll the dough into 3 flat sausages approx. 5 cm wide and 3 cm thick
7. put them on a baking sheet already prepared with baking paper
8. bake for twenty minutes, until lightly golden but still quite soft
9. take them out of the oven, and slice in 2cm pieces with a very sharp knife. use a sawing motion to cut through the crust and then cut in one fluid motion, because the dough is not quite cooked yet
10. lay the biscotti on their side and bake again for about 10-15 min until dry.
11. leave to cool completely before putting them in an airtight container where they should keep for about 3 weeks.

no better way to spend a sunday afternoon than baking...

but ofcourse i couldn t leave it at that, so i had to make my own pasta as well.



100 gr plain flour (if possible tipo 00) per person
1 egg per 100 gr flour


1. mix the eggs with the flour (i used 400 gr flour with 4 eggs) and knead well
2. wrap in clingfilm and leave to chill for minimum one hour
3. if you have a pasta making machine, roll the dough thru the machine at the widest setting a few times until shiny, then roll thru lower settings until the right thickness is achieved. remember to dust with flour once in a while so the dough doesn t stick (if you don t have a pasta machine, then just roll the dough to the required thickness with a rolling pin)
4. cut into fine tagliatelle or papardelle
5. cook in boiling salted water for about 3 minutes, fresh pasta cooks really quickly so keep watching it
6. serve with your favorite sauce

i got Sam to help me roll the dough thru the pasta machine

i made up my sauce with tuna, aubergine, onion, garlic, cherry tomatoes and kalamata black olives.

after that baking and cooking, enjoying this al fresco with a glass of wine was a perfect ending to an unusually good weekend...


  1. I want to eat that biscotti now with a nice cup of coffee!! I never made homemade pasta before but yours look sooooo good!!! thank you for posting the recipes!!

  2. gyah... i just noticed i had forgotten to add in the ingredients list the most important ingredient of all which is vin santo or marsala wine... !!!!! gomeeeen! i corrected that. it s all because i was thinking of answering to your comment how the biscotti also taste good dunked in vin santo as is traditional... ;-)
    tsukutte mitene!

  3. waaaaa, wine in biscotti!! sugoi!! I need to make this before it gets too hot to turn on the oven here!!! yatte miru ne!!

  4. I actually enjoyed reading through this posting.Many thanks.

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