Monday, 14 July 2014

Amaretto tiramisu.

I was recently flicking through some delicious photos taken at one of my Italian dessert evenings in the Spring. I taught a group of 50 students how to make simple yet full of flavour desserts.  From fresh Marsala Zabaglione to a palate cleansing summer berry semi-freddo, amaretto tiramisu, affogato and of course my personal favourite vanilla panna cotta with a red berry drizzle, jus, sauce, whatever you fancy!

If you ask anyone, 'What's your favourite Italian dessert' it will normally be 'Tiramisu', but I still find tiramisu can be a little hit and miss in so many ways. In my opinion whenever I choose to have one in a restaurant, I find its too wet and a little stodgy. I'm not selling the idea of tiramisu am I. 
My tiramisu is laced with amaretto, yes I do have a mild (huge) obsession for the amber spirit, it adds a mild depth of warmth to the dessert. The secret to a perfect tiramisu is to not soak the savoiardi biscuits, but to simply tease and dip them into the boozy coffee
this way the biscuits will still retain their form and the dessert will hold its definition. 

Amaretto Tiramisu 

250g mascarpone
3 large eggs
4 tbsp. granulated sugar
1 Packet Savoiardi biscuits
150ml Strong black coffee
4 tbsp amaretto
10g dark chocolate

1.      Make the strong coffee and cool. Pour in the deep coloured coffee liquor and stir. Set to one side.
2.      Separate the eggs. Whites in one bowl and yolks in another. Whisk together the sugar and egg yolks until creamy.
3.      Add the mascarpone cheese into the egg yolk mixture. Stir with a wooden spoon, and then whisk to remove any lumps, whisk for at least two minutes.
4.      Whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks are formed.
5.      Gently add and fold in the egg whites into the mascarpone mixture.
6.      Take your trifle dish or individual glasses.
7.      Let the layering begin. Start with dipping each biscuit into the coffee liquor mixture, dip and remove immediately and place in your dish.
8.      Complete one biscuit layer, then spoon on a layer of the cream mixture. Then the biscuits again and the cream. You should have three layers finishing with the cream on top.
9.      Grate with dark chocolate and cool in the fridge for at least 4-6 hours.

Monday, 30 June 2014

Soralina - Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oils & pastes from the region of Abruzzo...

Soralina is a family run business working closely with small independent artisan producers in Abruzzo, Italy, to bring authentic products to the UK.

Soralina offers delicious store cupboard ingredient to tempt the most adventurous of cooks, offering something a little different. From incredible Extra Virgin Olive Oils, to flavoured oils and beautiful rich pastes. Here Soralina showcases how beautiful  ingredients can enrich the most simplest of dishes.

Di Simone - Extra Virgin Olive Oil
A first cold pressed Extra Virgin Olive Oil made from olives that have been grown, cultivated, pressed and bottled exclusively in the D.O.P. Aprutino- Pescarese area of Abruzzo. As the name highlights this oil is produced by the Di Simone family in small batches with methods which have remained unchanged since the early 60's. A superbly balanced oil which holds its distinctive flavour when heated and is moreish, when dipped of drizzled. 

Pastes - Di Simone

Now these pastes will change the way you cook, for certain. Locally grown ingredients are simply blended with the Di Simone Extra Virgin Olive Oil, E basta, that's it, noting else. Leaving you to now produce delicious Italian inspired dishes at home. The pastes come in nine scrumptious flavours from: asparagus, artichoke, mushroom, chilli pepper, finely ground chilli, green olive, sun-dried tomato, garlic and chilli and my absolute knock out favourite being 'Pasta di Olive Nere', black olive paste. These pastes can be added to a simple pasta dish, used with fish, meat or simply used to spread generous amounts over bread and of course enjoyed with a little vino.

Flavoured Olive Oil - Di Simone

Di Simone - Olio al Limone (lemon) and Olio Agli Agrumi (citrus) are produced by adding whole Sicilian citrus fruits to the same olives used in the production of their extra virgin olive oil at the point of pressing. This can be carried out at the end of the season's pressing process and so quantities of these uniquely flavoured olive oils and limited. Olio al Limone, with whole fresh Sicilian lemons, is perfect for adding flavour to fish, seafood, white meats and seasonal salads. Olio Agli Agrumi, made with Sicilian lemon, orange, mandarin and pink grapefruit. Perfect for fish, game, red meats and adds a beautiful intensity to salads. 

Look out for recipes on my blog over the next two weeks using the Soralina products.

For more information on Soralina's products visit
Twitter: @soralinauk
Theo Paphitis #SBS Small Business Winner 25th May 2014