Posts tagged 'Recipes'
Once apon a time the world was divided into two, those who watched Fanny Cradock http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D2pOFIDUEzk&NR=1. and those who ate Couscous.
Our friend Gail just reminded me of how good couscous can be, and how many different types there are. She had two couscous salads ready this afternoon. She had ptitim which is an known as Israeli couscous and the second “normal couscous”
Here are two really quick recipes:
Brown the onions add the ptitim couscous and brown that too, add chicken stock, chuck in some big oyster mushrooms and puy lentils and that is it (truley easy and it is lovely cold too).
The second was “normal couscous which was mixed with pomegranite seeds flaked almond blended with Sev Mamra (chickpeas noodles) coriander and the juice of three limes.
Spelt (Triticum spelta syn. T. aestivum spelta), Farro to Italians and Dinkle to Germans, is one of the oldest grains. Actually, there are some slight differences (Farro must be soaked, whereas spelt can be boiled straight off), but we will ignore these for the sake of simplicity. Spelt can be traced back to the Bronze Age, from the area of the Fertile Crescent and the birthplace of western civilization.
Spelt is rich in vitamins and is a strong anti oxidant. It contains phosphorus, sodium, calcium and magnesium. It has a low amino acid content, but contains protein, polyunsaturated fats, iron and mineral salts.
Sown in autumn and cropped in summer in an area ranging between 300 and 1000m altitude, spelt does not require rich soils and is grown without fertilizers and herbicides.
We source our spelt from Garfangnana in the province of Lucca, Italy. The Spelt of Garfangnana has an IGP certification, an Italian certification ensuring it is from the area and conforms to traditional standards.
Consorzio Produttori Farro della Garfagnana
Via La Torre Pio
55035 Castelnuovo Garfagnana (LU)
phone: (+39) 0583/65189
Cooking with Spelt
Spelt comes as a husk or milled. If required, you can put it in a coffee grinder and give it a spin to get it to the preferred consistency.
You can add spelt to most dishes as a substitute for barley or other grains to give you a hearty nutty flavour.
Here are the basics of our Farro Soup
The base (soffritto)
Onion, celery and a carrot cooked slowly at a low heat in a few tablespoons of olive oil until your onion becomes translucent and everything begins to sweat a little. Don’t brown it or you will need to throw it. While cooking the soffritto, add diced pancetta or guanciale or, if you don’t have either, use some smoked bacon.
Add plum tomatoes and continue slow cooking for a few minutes then add stock. Sometimes you can leave out the stock, especially if you have used guanciale, and just add water or half a stock cube.
When everything is mixed up nicely and on a slow bubble, add in the spelt and cook slowly with a sprig of thyme or rosemary, or a bit of both, and a couple of bay leaves. Season.
Stir often and check it is not sticking to the bottom of the pot.
Serve with pecorino cheese and a splash of cold olive oil.
Some people might like it with a bit of chilli oil, or Olio Santo (Holy Oil) as my dad calls it.