Salame di Cioccolato – Italian Chocolate Salami

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INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup cocoa
  • 4 tbs orange liqueur, such as Triple Sec or Grand Marnier
  • 7 oz tea biscuits and/or plain butter cookies
  • 3 oz chopped pistachios
  • 2 tbs chopped bittersweet chocolate
  • powdered sugar, for decoration

METHOD:

  1. Break cookies into a large bowl and sprinkle with ½ the Grand Marnier, set aside.
  2. In a bowl, vigorously mix egg yolks with sugar until the mixture turns thick and the sugar is fully incorporated. Set aside.
  3. Meanwhile, heat the butter over low heat. With the back of a spoon smash the butter as it softens and begins to melt. Remove from heat as soon as the butter starts to liquify. Stir to combine.
  4. Next combine the broken cookies, butter and sugar mixture. Add the remaining ingredients and stir well to combine. The chocolate mixture will be sticky a bit messy to handle.
  5. Lay out a long sheet of wax paper or plastic wrap on a hard surface, about 18 inches long. Roll the mixture onto the wax paper and shape into a salami shape length wise to the paper. Mold salami to the desired length and thickness, somewhere between 2-3 inches. Bring salami to one side of paper and roll paper around log gently but firmly, twist ends similar to that of a salami.
  6. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or overnight.
  7. When ready to serve, unwrap the salami and lightly roll it in powdered sugar to give it a look of aged salami.
  8. Keep refrigerated.

Note: Salami will be very firm when cutting slices, so its best to take it out of the refrigerator a few minutes before serving. Entire salami can be cut into slices and refrigerated to make it easier to serve later. Or if entertaining, salami can be presented whole and guests can cut their own slices.

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Marzipan Cookies

INGREDIENTS:

For the marzipan balls

  • 2 Cups / 200g Ground almonds
  • 1/2 Cup Powdered sugar
  • 1/4 Cup Powdered sugar
  • Pinch salt
  • 1/2 tsp Almond essence
  • 2 Tbsp Water
  • 2 Tbsp Milk
  • 2 Egg yolks (medium)

For the cookie

  • 1/2 Cup / 100g Margarine
  • 1/2 Cup / 100g Caster sugar
  • 2 Tbsp Milk
  • 1 Cup / 160g Plain flour
  • 1/2 Cup / 80g Plain flour
  • 1/2 tsp Baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp Bicarbonate of soda
  • Pinch salt
  • 1 tsp Sweet mixed spice
  • 2 Egg whites (medium)
  • 1 Egg (medium)
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla essence
  • Candied peel (optional)

METHOD:

  1. Mix the dry marzipan ingredients together.
  2. Make a well in the centre of the almonds.
  3. Add the milk, water, almond essence and egg yolks mix well.

  1. Grease and flour a baking tray. Roll the marzipan into small balls and place on the oven tray with lots of space between each marzipan ball.

  1. Optionally on some marzipan balls you can place a few small pieces of candied peel around the marzipan.

  1. For the cookie topping place the margarine and sugar into a mixing bowl and cream together.

  1. In a small bowl whisk the egg.
  2. Add the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, salt, egg whites, mixed spice and milk mix well.
  3. Add the vanilla and whole whisked egg mix again.

  1. Take a spoonful of the cookie batter and gently place on top of each marzipan ball.
  2. Try the balance the cookie mixture so it will spread more over one side of the cookie.
  3. The whole marzipan ball should not be covered, there should be part of the marzipan visible after cooking.
  4. Remember when the cookies batter cooks it will spread and mould onto the marzipan ball.
  5. It may be easier to add a small spoon of the cookie batter at a time.

  1. Bake in a hot oven at gas mark 6 / 200C for 15 minutes.
  2. Use a spatula to remove the marzipan cookies from the tray and leave to cool on a wire rack.
  3. Do not eat the marzipan cookies until the cookies have cooled down completely.
  4. Dust with powdered sugar.
  5. Even drizzle some with a light icing if desired.

Homemade Bougatsa Pie (custard pie)

Famous Greek Custard Pie known as bougatsa …

INGREDIENTS:

  • Milk – 1/2 kg
  • Eggs – 3
  • Semolina – 1/2 cup
  • Vanilla – 2
  • Sugar – 1 cup of tea
  • Cinnamon – 1 tsp

For the pastry:

  • Flour – 1kg
  • Salt – 1 even teaspoonful
  • Butter – 1 pack

METHOD:

  1. Pour into a saucepan the milk, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon and semolina little by little, stirring over medium heat to prevent clotting.
  2. As soon as it begins to thicken remove it from the fire.
  3. When cool, add the eggs, stirring well.
  4. In a bowl, add the flour (keep about 200g), salt and some water to make a medium dough.
  5. In a saucepan, melt butter. Cut the dough into 3 balls and roll out into large sheets.
  6. Brush leaves with butter and wrap in rolls.
  7. Cut into 5 pieces and place them for 10 minutes in the freezer.
  8. Remove from the freezer one sheet at time and roll as thin as possible.
  9. Put on each sheet 2 tablespoons of the cream we made, we seal the sides and begin to fold it up like envelope.
  10. Brush them with egg yolk and bake in preheated oven at 180ºC until golden brown.
  11. When cool sprinkle lightly with icing sugar and cinnamon.