What do Italians eat for breakfast?

As a nation state, Italy has emerged only in 1871. Until then the country was politically divided into a large number of independant cities, provinces and islands. The currently available evidences point out to a dominant Etruscan, Greek and Roman cultural influence on today's Italians.
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Re: What do Italians eat for breakfast?

Postby misbris » 06 Oct 2007, 19:24

Peggy,

Somewhere along the line, we lost my Grandma's recipe for the chocolate spice cookies. Would you mind posting yours. I would really appreciate it. The minute you mentioned cloves, I remembered those cookies. They were usually a Christmas or Easter treat.

Mary Jo
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Re: What do Italians eat for breakfast?

Postby drovedo » 06 Oct 2007, 19:57

Wow! What an interest! Glad you found the package or recipe,Peggy.

Here is my Nonna's recipe if anyone wants to try it.

Italian Chocolate Cookies (A.K.A - Chocolate Spice Cookies)
Warning! This is the full recipe! Cut in half!


Sift Together the following ingredients in Bowl:

8 cups flour
8 tsp. baking powder
12 tsp. cocoa (I usually add extra cocoa, add as much as you like)
1 cup sugar
1 tsp cloves

Make deep well in the bowl of above ingredients and then Add:

1 cup spry (Crisco or other shortening) or 1 1/2 cups veg. oil (wine glass)
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 quart milk (works best with whole milk)
4 eggs well beaten
1 lb. chopped walnuts.
*********************************************
(these are the original ingredients, my aunts demanded cherries, so they got them, marchino red and green) Make it either way.

2 regular size glass jars of red marchino cherries
1/4 cup of green (go easy on the green)

If you want more cherries add them, just don't go overboard.
Add chopped (in quarters) marchino cherries.
******************************************************
Let mixture set one half hour. Make small (about one heaping tsp.), and place on cookie sheet. Bake at 375 degrees from 12 to 15 minutes.

Frosting:

Cream 4 tsp. butter and 1 tsp. vanilla
Add 1 lb. confectionary sugar (I always add by 1/4 cup to gage sweetness, you may not need a whole pound)
Cocoa---Keep adding until dark enough to suit you.
Add 1/2 cup milk.

Place baked cookies in large pan or bowl.
Pour frosting over them and keep on turning until they are all evenly coated. (spread it carefully with butter knife)

Remove and place on waxed paper until the frosting is dry.
When dry, cover loosely with aluminum foil. The cookies are not super moist so this step is important.

Storage: you can freeze them without the frosting.

Enjoy!
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Re: What do Italians eat for breakfast?

Postby misbris » 06 Oct 2007, 20:11

Thanks so much, this recipe sounds pretty much the same, but I don't remember nuts. I think she used just raisins, not cherries. But I love to experiment. I might ever try dried cranberries.

I remember helping her frost the cookies, she put them in a big maccaroni pot and we all helped turn them. We usually wound up encased in sugar.

It bring back so many memories :lol:
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Re: What do Italians eat for breakfast?

Postby Emmy » 06 Oct 2007, 21:18

I should have mentioned when I used peggymcgee's recipe I just put the all the ingredients into the blender and gave it a whizz! the consistency of the dough was almost identical to that if you were making shortbread and it was difficult to roll out (I put it into the fridge for 30 minutes) so it makes sense that it would be pressed into a baking tin,(as you do with shortbread) an jam put on top. But I had so much fun trying to make them look like croissants only to discover the shape had disappeared when they came out of the oven. :o :lol: :lol:
I was back doing basic maths again this is a rectangle ,cut diagonally etc etc etc :wink: :D :lol:
Take note -Once cooked they disappear very quickly!
Emmy
Now for the choclate spice cookies???
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Re: What do Italians eat for breakfast?

Postby drovedo » 07 Oct 2007, 04:19

I remember helping her frost the cookies, she put them in a big maccaroni pot and we all helped turn them. We usually wound up encased in sugar.



lol. thats why I now individually frost with butter knife. Can be fast but messy.

Emmy-- The Chocolate spice cookies are shaped like drop cookies. You just take small size spoon, scoop the dough and drop with finger on cookie sheet. They should be round, size about inch across or less, and will rise slightly. Oh forgot, yes, they disappear!!!
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Re: What do Italians eat for breakfast?

Postby elba » 07 Oct 2007, 10:23

peggymckee wrote:Pass the coffee! What great pictures! Is this the kind of pastry you are talking about in the recipe?

Pasta frolla.

2 cups flour
1/2 cup sugar
2/3 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 egg and 1 yolk
The grated zest of a half a lemon or a quarter of an orange


No - pasta frolla is shortcrust pastry. this method requires pasta sfoglia which is puff pastry.

I admit to cheating :oops: when I make these by buying the 'ready made' 'sfoglia' from either the supermarket of my local baker.... I gave up all the work involved with the rolling out, addind the fat, folding over and rolling again and again 'til many layers were made! Now I just buy a pack of fresh pasta and in minutes the fresh brioche/ croissant are made....

This is what they should look like (this is not one of mine....)
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Re: What do Italians eat for breakfast?

Postby drovedo » 07 Oct 2007, 11:54

Elba,

I'm drooling, if you have the recipe or find it for making the puff pastry "pasta sfoglia", please post!

I love croissants, however, most bakery shops here don't make them anymore from scratch (they get them frozen and bake). They taste like they don't add any layer butter. :cry:

8) :P

PS: Are those the Dolomite Mountains in the background of your avatar?
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Re: What do Italians eat for breakfast?

Postby Emmy » 07 Oct 2007, 19:41

Hi Elba
My cookies kinda looked like that when they first went into the oven
but they certainly had changed shape when they came out :lol:

I've just given the recipe I used to my friend tonight and she's going home to make her version
Shes going to put a layer of the pastry then a layer of chopped dates then a layer of pastry on the top. Sounds good.
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Re: What do Italians eat for breakfast?

Postby elba » 07 Oct 2007, 20:44

drovedo wrote:Elba,

I'm drooling, if you have the recipe or find it for making the puff pastry "pasta sfoglia", please post!

PS: Are those the Dolomite Mountains in the background of your avatar?


I'll see if I can find the old recipe I used years ago when I lived back in England. It's many years since I made puff pastry from scratch. These days it would be made much easier though with one of these (a pasta roller)
Image

After each turn you could just brush either soft butter (and often lard) over it before folding and rolling again - and again - and again...........

The mountains in my avatar are the Alps. Here is a view of the same range I took from my terrace looking west towards Lake Como (that's out of sight though):

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Re: What do Italians eat for breakfast?

Postby drovedo » 08 Oct 2007, 04:05

Thanks Elba, can't wait!! Love the view. I should have known better, the alps look totally different than Dolomites.

Funny, the pasta roller you show looks exactly like my Nonna's. ( Well made, still works, however, just tiny specks of rust)

I hate the electric ones. Usually I'll just hand roll pasta dough for ravioli rather than use an electric one. I tried one, took it back. Very cheap and difficult to use.

Do you know where to order one exactly like the one pictured? It is difficult to find good quality pasta rollers in US.

Thank you.
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Re: What do Italians eat for breakfast?

Postby elba » 08 Oct 2007, 07:05

drovedo wrote:Funny, the pasta roller you show looks exactly like my Nonna's. ( Well made, still works, however, just tiny specks of rust)

Do you know where to order one exactly like the one pictured? It is difficult to find good quality pasta rollers in US.


It's the same as my pasta roller - 41 years old, but will 'go' forever..
I've found this place on the Italian net:
>LOOK HERE<

They are an on line sales company and their pages are also in English. The model you are looking for is the ATLAS 150 and it costs €34.....not bad. But you would need to check if they will post to the USA (?). You can also buy a little motor to put onto these - my niece in Milan has one like that and she likes it.
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Re: What do Italians eat for breakfast?

Postby pink67 » 08 Oct 2007, 10:56

In my family we hand down this one....

Very strong and almost "eternal"

http://www.imperia.com/popup.htm

But don't know if you can find it in USA...

Laura
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Re: What do Italians eat for breakfast?

Postby drovedo » 08 Oct 2007, 15:47

Thank you so much, the both of you!!! I'm going to check out the sites.
**Just sent email to see if they ship to US or do I need to get shipped to european address and then sent to me.

Happy Christopher Columbus Day everyone! Observed that is. It was Friday actually. doh! (Although some say he's not even from Italy now!)

Ah so what!

Enjoy Leif Erikson Day tomorrow too!

Just make sure you go to Indian casino this week for Act of Contrition! Nevermind this part, if you are in Italy. Just drink grappa!
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Re: What do Italians eat for breakfast?

Postby elba » 18 Oct 2007, 08:35

drovedo wrote:Elba,

I'm drooling, if you have the recipe or find it for making the puff pastry "pasta sfoglia", please post!


Well - sorry for the delay, but I wasn't sure where that old recipe book was - but as luck would have it, I found it while looking for something else. At least this way you have the right quantities for 1lb of pastry. But be warned - it is hardly worth doing yourself - I haven't made it myself for maybe 35 years... These days with a good ready made product - it's hardly worth spending nearly an hour making the pasrty from scratch.

But here it is - for what it's worth..... Enjoy!

Puff Pastry
• To make 1lb puff pastry
Ingredients
• ½ lb plain flour
• ½ tsp salt
• 1 tsp lemon juice
• cold water, to mix
• ½ lb unsalted butter
Method
1. Sift flour and salt together in a bowl.

2. Add lemon juice and mix into the flour. Add enough cold water to make a pastry ball.

3. Knead gently for 5 minutes on a floured surface until the dough is smooth, not sticky.

4. Roll the pastry into a square large enough to wrap around the butter.

5. Put the butter (still cold) in the middle of the pastry and fold the pastry over the butter.

6. Use a rolling pin to flatten the pastry-wrapped butter a little, Then roll it out gently and evenly into a long strip. Make sure the butter stays closed inside the pastry.

7. Fold 1/3 of the pastry strip towards the middle, then fold the remaining pastry flap over that. You’ve now got a piece of pastry in three layers.

8. Gently press this block of pastry down – don’t seal the edges. Let it stand in a cool place for 15 minutes.

9. Put the pastry on a floured surface and repeat the rolling and folding process another four times.

10. Let it stand in a cool place for 10 minutes. Now repeat the rolling and folding process another three times.
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Re: What do Italians eat for breakfast?

Postby peggymckee » 18 Oct 2007, 18:30

Hi all--

Here's what I ended up taking to the party in Italian class: Crostata con marmalate. I used the pasta frolla recipe and cooked about a pound of plums with sugar on stove top until close to jam. (I didn't have any jam in the house but did have plums.) Baked the unfilled shell for about 10 minutes, then added the cooked plums, backed another 15 minutes or so. It was a big hit! The puff pastry sounds good too. All the best, Peg
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