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Struffoli Recipe

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Struffoli Recipe

Struffoli Recipe

Originating in Naples, this sweet treat can be found in other parts of southern Italy as well, such as Calabria and Sicily, under different names and topped with other ingredients. Traditionally prepared during the Christmas Season, Neapolitan struffoli are served with honey and brightly colored sprinkles.

  • Prep Time30 min
  • Cook Time35 min
  • Total Time1 hr 5 min
  • Yield6 Servings
  • Cuisine
    • Italian
  • Course
  • Cooking Method
    • Frying

Ingredients

For Struffoli:

  • 4 tbsp (2 oz) unsalted butter (melted)
  • 400 g (14 oz) flour
  • 3 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 3 medium eggs
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • Zest from 1 orange
  • 3 tsp limoncello or white wine
  • Peanut oil (for frying)

For the glaze:

  • ½ cup honey
  • Nonpareils sprinkles, as needed to generously cover struffoli

Instructions

1

Start by melting the butter then let it cool. Meanwhile, place the flour, sugar, eggs, pinch of salt, and orange zest in a mixing bowl. Add the melted butter once cooled followed by the limoncello or white wine.

2

Mix the dough with a large spoon to combine the ingredients then knead by hand until you can form it into a dense ball. Cover with a kitchen towel and let the dough rest for at least 30 minutes at room temperature. Meanwhile, line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

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3

When the dough is ready, cut the dough vertically into 6-7 even slices with a dough scraper or knife.

4

Roll out each slice into a long tube approximately 1 cm thick. Next, cut each tube into small round pieces about 1 cm wide. Place on the baking sheet lined with parchment paper (make sure the dough is evenly spread out otherwise the pieces will stick together).

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5

In a large Dutch oven, slowly heat the peanut oil to approximately 350 degrees (use a deep fry thermometer). When the oil is ready, lower the dough balls into the oil with a wire skimmer. To ensure the temperature does not fluctuate too much, only cook about 2 handfuls of dough at a time. Stir the oil with the skimmer to ensure even cooking. Fry for about 2 to 3 minutes then remove the dough balls with the skimmer, strain, and place on a baking sheet lined with paper towels to absorb excess oil.

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6

While the struffoli are cooling, pour the honey into a deep pan and melt over low heat. After about 1 to 2 minutes, add the struffoli and stir to combine. Turn off the heat and let the mixture cool a bit before adding the nonpareils sprinkles. Stir to combine.

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7

Place a glass jar in the center of a round serving platter (this will help shape the struffoli into a ring). Arrange the struffoli around the glass jar. When the honey has solidified, remove the glass jar and enjoy!

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Note: Instead of frying, you could also bake the struffoli at 390 degrees for 15 minutes then proceed with steps 6 and 7.

Cioccolata Calda Recipe: Authentic Italian Hot Chocolate

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Cioccolata Calda Recipe: Authentic Italian Hot Chocolate

Cioccolata calda, Italian Hot Chocolate Recipe

The quintessential winter treat, cioccolata calda (hot chocolate) is beloved by Italians for its rich flavor derived from the use of milk and melted chocolate. A delicious staple of Italy’s characteristic Christmas markets, cioccolata calda is also perfect for a quiet evening at home.

  • Prep Time5 min
  • Cook Time15 min
  • Total Time20 min
  • Yield2 Servings

Ingredients

For Cioccolata calda (Hot Chocolate):

  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 ½ tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 ½ tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 ½ tbsp corn starch
  • 4 ¼ oz dark chocolate 60% to 69% cacao

For Optional whipped cream:

  • 2 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup cold heavy cream

Instructions

1

For the optional whipped cream:  Pour cold heavy cream, sugar, and vanilla extract into a mixing bowl. Use a hand mixer or stand mixer to whip the cream. Continue to whip until peaks begin to form and stop periodically to test the peaks (medium to stiff peaks are best for this recipe). When the whipped cream is ready, place in the refrigerator and start preparing the hot chocolate.

2

For the hot chocolate: Roughly chop the dark chocolate. Set a medium bowl over a saucepan or pot of simmering water (the bowl must not touch the water) and put the chocolate in the bowl. With a whisk or spatula, stir continuously until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Put the melted chocolate aside.

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3

Pour the milk into a medium saucepan followed by the corn starch. Stir the mixture then add the cocoa powder and stir once more.

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4

Turn on the heat to medium-low and let the mixture heat up while whisking continuously. Add the sugar, then continue to whisk. Ensure that the mixture does not boil.

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5

Add the melted chocolate to the saucepan with the milk and cocoa powder mixture. Continue to stir until thickened to your desired consistency. Pour into a mug and top with homemade whipped cream.

Note: If the chocolate ends up being too dense, dilute with a bit of milk or more whipped cream.

Porchetta di maiale

Porchetta di maiale

Porchetta di maiale Recipe

An authentic Italian roasted pork recipe.

  • Prep Time15 min
  • Cook Time2 hr
  • Total Time2 hr 15 min
  • Yield8 Servings

Ingredients

  • 3 ¾ - 4 lbs. boneless pork shoulder roast, skin on
  • 4 sprigs rosemary
  • 2 teaspoons fennel pollen
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt
  • 1 ½ ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Kitchen twine

Instructions

1

Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees. Finely chop the rosemary and place in a small bowl. Add the fennel pollen, minced garlic, salt, and pepper and mix together with a spoon.

2

Score the skin of the pork in a diamond pattern with cuts that are about 1/8 inch deep. Lay the pork flat and make 10 or more cuts throughout the pork. Stuff the pork with about 1/3 of the herb mixture.

3

Roll the pork and tie together with kitchen twine by running the twine horizontally along the longer side of the pork and making a knot. Then, place the twine in the opposite direction and make a second knot. Repeat until all of the pork is tied.

4

Cover the skin with olive oil and rub with the remaining herb mixture.

5

Place the pork in a roasting pan and roast in the oven at 375 degrees for about 1 hour and a half, until the pork reaches an internal temperature of 156 degrees. Let the meat rest for 15 minutes then slice and enjoy!

Bollito Makes A Christmas Day Dinner

Bollito

Classic Bollito

Bollito is a dish prevalent in the northern part of Italy especially in the regions of Lombardy and Piedmont. It typically consists of a variety of meats, usually tougher cuts of beef or veal, that are gently boiled for about 3 hours in a broth made from vegetables and herbs. The result is tender, flavorful meat in rich, delicious broth. A good bollito requires plenty of time to cook, fresh herbs, and carefully selected meats. Bollito can be served on its own or paired with boiled vegetables, homemade sauces, or mostarda (candied fruit in a mustard-based syrup). In Piedmont, ``bollito misto`` is prevalent, which features hen and cotechino (pork sausage) in addition to beef and veal. This simple and hearty dish is a classic winter staple for many Italian families and an emblem of Italian home-cooking.

  • Prep Time15 min
  • Cook Time3 hr
  • Total Time3 hr 15 min

Ingredients

Ingredients

  • 2 ¼ lbs. beef (ideal cuts for this recipe include: fore shank, short ribs, brisket, bottom sirloin, chuck steak, flank steak, or round steak)
  • 1 carrot
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 15 grams kosher salt
  • 1 onion
  • 1 bunch of parsley
  • 3 cloves
  • 2 celery stalks
  • 1 sprig of thyme
  • 4 whole black peppercorns

Preparation

1

Tie the meat with kitchen twine (any of the cuts listed above can be used in this recipe). Fill a tall pot with water and place over medium heat. Peel the onion and stick the three cloves into the onion. Peel the carrot and cut it into pieces that are about 1 inch in length. Tie the bay leaves, parsley, and thyme together using kitchen twine. Place the onion, carrot, celery, and herbs in the water.

2

Once the water is boiling, add the salt and the meat. It is very important that the meat is immersed in the water only after it has started to boil consistently, not a moment before.

3

After a few minutes, foam will begin to gather on the surface of the water. Remove all of the foam with a skimmer and then add the black peppercorns to the pot. Reduce the heat to low.

4

Cook for about 3 hours ensuring that the water remains at a gentle, but consistent boil throughout. Once the meat is cooked, remove it from the water using a slotted spoon.

Roasted Veal and Potatoes

Roasted Veal and Potatoes

Roasted Veal

Roasted Veal and Potatoes is a common Christmas Day meal.

  • Prep Time5 min
  • Cook Time10 min
  • Total Time15 min

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs. veal tenderloin
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 sprig of rosemary
  • 1 garlic clove, cut in half
  • 2 sage leaves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 ladle of warm beef broth
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Preparations

1

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. Tie the veal with kitchen twine and season with salt and pepper on all sides. In a pot large enough to hold the meat, heat the olive oil over medium heat and brown the meat on all sides. Use two wooden spoons to carefully turn the meat.

2

Add the white wine and allow it to evaporate. Next, add the herbs, beef broth, and garlic. Allow the flavors to mix for a minute or two and then roast in the oven at 400 degrees for 1 hour to 1 hour and 15 minutes. Turn the meat and baste frequently while it’s cooking. If the pan starts to dry up, add more warm beef broth.

3

Turn off the oven and allow the veal to rest for 10 minutes in the oven. Then, drain the liquid from the pot and strain it. Remove the twine and cut the meat into even slices. Serve with the strained sauce.

Spaghetti alle Vongole

Spaghetti alle Vongole

Spaghetti alle Vongole

Spaghetti Alle Vongole or Spaghetti with clams is a classic dish any time of year, but at Christmas, this dish often takes center stage.

  • Prep Time20 min
  • Cook Time25 min
  • Total Time45 min

Ingredients

  • 2 ¼ lbs. clams
  • 10.5 oz. spaghetti
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Red pepper flakes to taste
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Preparations

1

Preparing the clams: the day before cooking, clean the clams by placing them in a bowl of salted cold water for at least 12 hours. Immediately before cooking, rinse the clams under cold water to ensure that all sand has been removed.

2

Place the rinsed clams, garlic, and white wine in a skillet over high heat. Let the wine evaporate, cover the pan tightly with the lid, and wait until the clams open completely, this should take about 3 minutes. Remove the clams and garlic. Drain the liquid, strain, and reserve.

3

In the same pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and sauté for about 1 minute. Return the clams and filtered liquid to the pan and heat for 2 minutes.

4

Finely chop the parsley and cook the spaghetti in boiling salted water until it is almost al dente.

5

Drain the spaghetti and add to the pan with the clams. Stir for a few seconds and serve immediately with sprinkled parsley and freshly ground black pepper to taste.

Roasted baccalà with Tomatoes and Potatoes

Roasted baccalà with Tomatoes and Potatoes

Roasted baccalà with tomatoes and potatoes

This is a classic Italian Christmas Eve Dish

  • Prep Time20 min
  • Cook Time35 min
  • Total Time55 min

Ingredients

  • 2.5 lbs. prepared salt cod/baccalà (see step 1)
  • 1 lb. potatoes, cut into thin slices
  • 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes
  • 1 onion, diced
  • ¼ cup dry white wine
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
  • Red pepper flakes to taste
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt to taste

Preparation Instructions

1

Preparing the salt cod: Three days prior to cooking, soak the pieces of salt cod in a large pan with cold water. Cover the pan tightly with aluminum foil and place in the refrigerator for three days to rehydrate the fish and remove the salt. Be sure to flip the pieces of fish occasionally and replace the water every 8 hours. Immediately before cooking, rinse the cod with cold water and pat dry to remove any excess salt. Cut the salt cod into cubes about 2 inches long.

2

Pre-heat the oven to 355 degrees. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions, a small ladle of water (about 2 ounces), and a pinch of salt. Once the onions are transparent, add the white wine and wait for it to evaporate. Next, add the tomatoes, garlic, parsley, and red pepper flakes and cook for 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Remove the garlic and reserve 2 tablespoons of sauce then place the rest in a baking dish.

3

Meanwhile, in another pan heat the remaining olive oil and sauté the potato slices for 4 minutes. Then, add the potatoes to the baking dish with the tomatoes and stir.

4

Place the salt cod in the baking dish on top of the layer of potatoes and tomatoes and top with the reserved sauce. Cover and bake for 20 minutes at 355 degrees. Serve immediately.