Month: December 2013

Panettone Bread Pudding: Using the Custard Ratio

Panettone bread pudding with creme anglaise

Panettone bread pudding with creme anglaise

One last post for 2013.  Here’s a dessert which has become kind of a tradition for our Christmas Eve dinner: panettone bread pudding.  This Italian Christmas loaf makes a superb bread pudding since it’s already sweetened and is chock full of raisins and other fruit.  It’s usually the last bit of holiday baking I do and the custard ratio makes this quick dessert a snap. (more…)

Advertisements

A Twist on Fruit Cake: Pan del Marinaio (Sailor’s bread)

Pan del marinaio1 Fruit cakes are synonymous with Christmas and ever since my mom sent me Carol Field’s ‘The Italian Baker’ I’ve had my eye on the ‘festive’ breads section.  There are a number of recipes for holiday sweet breads in it, including…fruit breads.  While thumbing through it the other day I came across a fruit filled bread recipe from Genoa: pan del marinaio, or sailor’s bread.  I don’t think it is particularly a Christmas bread but it looked to be a nice twist on the traditional fruit cake. (more…)

Christmas Cookie: Lemon Squares

Lemon SquaresThere is not much time left to get your Christmas baking in.  I’ve been churning out my regulars this week but I wanted to add a new one to the rotation: lemon squares.  They are pretty popular any time of the year but I think they’re great around Christmas since they are a bit lighter than my normal Christmas cookies.  Lemon squares also provide a nice citrusy contrast to all of the chocolate and gingerbread cookies you’ll find on most cookie platters.  I brought some to the office the other day and received a lot of nice compliments on them! (more…)

Filetto: Fennel Pollen Cured Pork Tenderloin (Mini-Lonza)

Curing chamber filetto on the left; pantry hung filetto on right.

Curing chamber filetto on the left; pantry hung filetto on right.

When we’ve traveled in Spain (and France and Italy for that matter) I’ve always been awestruck by the different kinds of cured meats I see in the markets.  There’s no grinding and stuffing, in fact the process for curing whole muscles is relatively simple and they are very easy ‘starter’ projects for the budding home charcuterist.  Basically you salt the meat, cure it for a period of time, rinse off the cure and then hang to age and dry in your meat curing refrigerator. Hang on you say, a WHAT…?  Yeah that’s right, we’re kicking things up a notch going into 2014. (more…)