Fior di Latte Gelato with a Fennel-Infused Honey and Pine Nut Swirl

  I have been meaning to make fior di latte gelato for quite some time – it is one of the most delicate flavoured gelatos you can find. Sure, normally I am a pistacchio gelato lover through and through but given that I have had my fair share of this over the past few years (most notably in Noto in Sicily, as close to where the famous Pistacchi di Bronte come from as I have managed so far), I have started to branch out – my favourite Roman gelateria, Fatamorgana, offers all sorts of mouth-watering flavours, a firm favourite being ricotta con agrumi (ricotta gelato mixed with citrus fruit zest) … but sometimes, you just want a classic, something that isn’t too sweet, something that doesn’t challenge your taste buds but promises simple pleasures, the ice cream equivalent of a down comforter, and that is where fior di latte gelato steps into the picture. It is one of the few gelato flavours that does not rely

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Chickpea and Fennel ‘Risotto’

As is clear from a quick glance at my recipe index, I have a pretty big sweet tooth.  So much so that I rarely feature savoury recipes on my blog. The truth is, baking for me is relaxation and with a busy job and a fair amount of travel, dinner, while often delicious, typically involves me and Alessandro staring into our empty fridge and trying to come up with something decent to eat. I love cooking big meals for friends, but the occasions where we all manage to get together around our big dining table are few and far between. The other day, save for a bulb of fennel, some onions and garlic, our fridge and vegetable basket were empty challenging me to come up with something edible based on the little food we had to hand! A quick glance in the pantry and I found what would be the star of our meal – a jar of chickpeas! While

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Fresh Peach and Fennel Tart – Mastering the Art of Baking

As I have mentioned before, my time in the kitchen is pretty limited (and more limited than I would like). I try to make the most of the time that I have by making No Knead Bread or preparing pizza dough before work. However, being pressed for time also means I tend to stick to tried-and-tested recipes. Yet, I long to learn new baking skills and become more adventurous in the kitchen. As much as I like baking brownies, muffins and cupcakes, I have made them a dozen of times. Yes, they are quick, easy and tasty, but other than coming up with new flavour combinations or making the most of seasonal ingredients, the thrill of baking these is gone. So yes, I have found myself in a bit of a baking rut lately. Thanks to watching the Great British Bake-Off I now have new found motivation to step outside of my comfort zone and try and master those recipes

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Brownies for Grown-Ups

I had been meaning to try my hand at making brownies again for quite some time. I hesitated at first: I have not yet met anyone who does not like brownies, but I have also not yet met anyone who does not have strong views on what constitutes a good brownie. Although most people agree a brownie should be ‘fudgey’ (although to different degrees for different people) and never ‘cakey’, brownies can be tricky to bake as you are meant to pull them out of the oven a little early – so the little trick involving a toothpick to check for doneness of a cake just does not work for brownies – right when you are supposed to take them out of the oven, any toothpick you have used to prod your brownies will be covered in gooey chocolatey brownie dough. However, this would also have been the case 5 minutes earlier and would still be the case had you

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Dan Lepard’s flatbread

While I cannot take credit for the recipe for the flatbreads (all credit is due to Dan Lepard), I can take credit for the two awesome topping ideas I came up with recently: first, a flatbread topped with sausage meat and fennel and, secondly, a spicy meatlover’s feast. Fennel sausage flatbread Toppings for 1 flatbread, ideal for sharing and plenty of dinner for greedy eaters like myself 1/2 of the quantity of Dan’s wholemeal flatbread recipe 4 good quality pork sausages, about 5inch long 1.5 tsp fennel seeds 1 bulb fresh fennel, sliced vertically 1 tbsp cream cheese 1 fresh mozzarella ball, sliced thinly 2 garlic cloves Olive oil for frying 1. Once your flatbread dough is ready for us, roll out thinly and place on an oiled baking sheet. Pre-heat your oven to 250 degrees. 2. Heat a small amount of olive oil in a pan and crumble your sausage meat into the pan. Add the garlic, the sliced

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This is not much of a recipe but basically a tasty idea for what to do with leftover ganache. And I am sure most of us at some point or another have leftover ganache that we don’t know what to do with. In my case, I had some leftover ganache from my recent attempt at making fennel-flavoured Oreos (recipe for the ganache here). Not wanting the good stuff go to waste, here is what I came up with. I had kept my ganache in the fridge given the limited shelf-life of ganache due to the use of fresh cream so I the ganache come to room temperature first. Once soft enough to roll (you don’t want to wait too long here otherwise you will get very sticky fingers during this step), divide your ganache into equal sized chunks and carefully roll into balls. Sprinkle some fleur de sel over your little ganache balls, roll in cocos powder, sit in mini

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