Pasta bolognesa was my favourite dish as a kid. We had it I think once every week. Canelones was another big one but my mum didnt cook it that often as it was more time consuming assembling the canelones and preparing the white sauce.
Anyway, I wanted to try the spinach version so I found this recipe that looked nice. I used lasagna sheets cut in two for the canelones and worked nicely.
Ingredients for filling
12 lasagna sheets
250g frozen spinach (put in boiling water to unfreeze)
1 chopped onion
1 piece of garlic
1 boiled egg
20g of pine nuts
a bit of grated parmesan cheese (or similar hard cheese)
Ingredients for bechamel sauce:
2-3 big tsp of plain flour
25g of butter
salt and pepper
grated parmesan cheese
Boil 1l water in a pan, with salt and a bit of olive oil. Once boiling, put lasagna sheet in 2-3 at each time. They should be ready in a couple of minutes (they should float). Remove and leave it rest.
In a sauce pan, heat some oil, add the onion and garlic. Until soft
Add the unfrozen spinach, keep stirring.
Add the pine nuts and the boiled egg (cut in small pieces). Salt and pepper.
Add a bit of cheese.
Retire from the heat.
In a saucepan, melt the butter, add the flour little by little until forming a paste.
Start adding the milk, again little by little stirring without stopping. This is at low-medium heat. Add nutmet, salt and pepper. Taste from time to time. Add the cheese at the end.
Once you have a sauce that is not very liquid neither thick, we are ready to assemble everything.
Pre-heat oven at 200C
Put some of the bechamel in the spinach mix and stir.
Prepare an oven dish. Put some butter or bechamel sauce in the dish to avoid stickiness.
Take the cold lasagne sheets, cut in two squares. In each square put a spoon of the spinach mix and roll like a canelone. Put in the oven dish in lines.
Once you the oven dish covered with canelones, pour the bechamel soauce on top of them. Add some grated cheese. I had some tomato sauce left over and I add it too.
Put the oven dish in the oven. 30m or until the top is grilled.
I read this book in 2019 about fermentation as I was already doing sourdough and wanted to learn more things. It is a great about anything related to fermentation. From there I started doing sauerkraut (still haven’t achieved the required results though). Another thing I wanted to try was kombucha, a fermented fizzy drink. I thought it was difficult to develop the scoby until I watched this video and learned that I can buy it! So I got my scobby and started the process:
2- Add two bags of black tea for 10 minutes, then remove the bags.
3- Let it cool down to room temperature
4- Add the mixture to a 1 litre jar, add the scoby with its liquid.
5- Cover the jar with a cloth and leave it somewhere warm for 5 days without direct sunlight (I put it under the sink)
6- Remove the scoby and 100ml of the mix into a small jar, keep it in the fridge for the next batch.
7- Put the rest of the mix into a airtight glass 1l bottle at room temperature for 3-7 days until fizzy. I put it under the sink again. You may release a bit of gas after a couple of days if you dont want to see the bottle explode when opening…
8- Put the bottle in the fridge, and afterwards you can enjoy a refreshing fizzy homemade drink!!!
It is a slow process but it is easy. In my first bottle, I was surprised because it was actually quite fizzy!!! The taste was a kind of cider, redbull , etc without the after taste of dead by sugar.
I am doing my second bottle and at some point I would like to add flavours, like ginger… I need to check if this is consider ginger beer. Although no idea if it generates any alcohol… (there is a fermentation process involved and breakdown of sugars….)
Happy with it, and hopefully adding to my routine.
It is never too late. I have never tried “Roscon de Reyes” before. But this year (although over a week later) I wanted to make it as it is the only thing I miss from (my child time) Christmas (Sorry Santa, you dont belong to my culture)
580g Strong white flour (I guess you can use plain too)
180 ml milk (I use semi-skim)
7g instant yeast (1 sacket – I can’t get fresh yeast)
80g butter (room temperature)
zest of 1 orange
zest of 1 lemon
pinch of salt
1 tsp of vanilla paste (I dont have “agua de azahar”)
Italian mixed peel (orange and lemon glacier peel)
Ingredients for the filling / cream:
500ml of double cream (cold from the fridge)
In a bowl, put the flour, sugar, yest, zest of lemon, zest of orange, pinch of salt, vanilla paste. Mix everything.
Make a whole in the middle, add the milk, eggs. Mix everything until nearly combine. Finally the butter. Mix again, you will reach a point it is not possible in the bowl.
Put the dough in a work surface. Start knelling a bit. Once your hands are quite sticky with the dough. Stop for a couple of minutes while you scrap the dough from your hands into the main ball. Start knelling again, it should be much easier now and you should get a soft dough after 5-7 minutes.
Put a couple of oil drops in the bowl and spread it so we are going to put the dough in it. Cover with plastic film and let it rest until double in size. It can be over a couple of hours as it is winter.
Once the dough is double in size, remove it from the bowl. Remove the air bubbles knelling a bit, let it rest of a couple of minutes in the bowl.
Take the dough and make a whole in the middle. Spin the dough so you create a “wheel”. Put it in a try with baking paper. Let it rest until double in size again (this time will be quicker)
Now, start preparing the filling. Put in a bowl the double cream, sugar and milk. I used a hand blender and it was perfectly fine. The cream became solid quite quickly to be honest. Give it a taste, you can add more sugar if you want. Let it rest in the fridge.
Once the ring-dough has double up. Pre-heat the oven at 180C. Egg wash the dough very well, this will make it golden. Then add as much Italian mixed peel, glacier cherries and almond flakes as you can. The egg should help to stick it.
Once the oven is hot. Put the “roscon” in until golden. My case was nearly 30 minutes.
Once it is golden, remove from the oven. Let it cool down. With a bread knife, cut it in two slices. Be careful dont break the top, put it aside. Now spread all your cream / “nata” in the base. Put back the top over the cream. And that’s it.
It brought me very good memories (and it is tasty!!!)
“Patatas con ajo” was a typical side dish I had with a beef steak when I was a kid. I remember that acid/strong flavour of the potatoes. I have tried a couple of time lately and I couldn’t find the flavour. So I check a couple of videos, and this one gave me the clue, vinager! And then I realised that very likely in each household, this recipe has a different name like “patatas a la vinagreta”.
In my case, the potatoes are fried with much less olive oil so they dont get that crispy. Once they are cooked, removed from the pan, and put chopped garlic, parsly and vinager (I used white wine one). Cooked for 30 sec and then add again the potatoes. Be sure everything gets mixed. Then remove from the heat.
I found that childhood taste! And the day after, they were even better!