Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Chiaras miniatures

Hi there! My name is Chiara and I'm from Italy.
I’m an unbeatable artisan, I think I have done pretty much everything in my life. My second passion is cooking, I especially love pastries: I read a lot of magazines, cookbooks and I have taken a lot of pastry classes: really fun!
I attracted to the visual beauty of food and think we eat with our eyes first and then with our mouths. My jewels, therefore, were born from the inspiration of my two greatest passions, cooking and creating handcrafted objects.
A great deal of passion and attention goes into every single detail in each creation I make.
My jewels are for people who like to have a good time and don’t take themselves too seriously.
I think that each of us has a child inside who needs to be constantly fed with games, colours, fantasy and creativity.
Life would be unbearable if I weren’t able to give in every now and then to the little girl inside me!
I can’t survive without playing!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Portable Knife from the Cooking Club of America

Sometime ago I signed up to join a club, Cooking Club of America (http://www.cookingclub.com/). In the process to become a member,you can opt to become a product tester. The Club will send certain products to members that needed to be tested and reviewed. You test it, and fill out a product test card and send the review card back within a certain amount of time. The product is yours to keep for free- really it is!

The product I received to test is called On-The-Go Portable Knife. It is an 8 inch stainless steel knife that has its own protective case. All in all I didn't really like the knife. Nevertheless, it is lightweight, and comfortable to use. I know it is supposed to be compact and portable but I thought the handle was just a tiny bit short. The protective case stops you from having a blade exposed but seems a little cheap and unless you realize that there is a button to press, you could have trouble taking the knife out.It was sharp (like a knife should be) and sliced through the food  easily - I kept it because it was free but I would not have bought it myself.

Hopefully, the next test items wil be better!

I was also given the opportunity to purchase a really great cook book for just $10.99. Thats was definitely worth the price and I would have bought it - but I already have too many cook books!!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Spare Rib Marinade

I found my old recipe book and this was one of my favourite marinades for ribs. They need to marinate of 24-48hrs to be really good. Then cook as you normally do - I would either grill, bake or bbq them.
6-8 servings
5-6 lbs ribs
4 cups water
1 1/2 cups soy sauce
1 cup sugar
10 garlic cloves, crushed
4 green onions, chopped
3 tbs sesame seeds
3 tbs sesame oil
2 tbs fresh ginger, ground
1 tbs honey
2 tbs hot pepper sauce.

Mix all the ingredients except the ribs, then pour over the ribs and marinate - the longer the better!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Zuppa Di Cozze - Mussels

Now that summer is here, if you live by the sea try this zuppa di cozze.
I love seafood - and nothing is better than fresh mussles and Italian Bread to soak up the juices! I like to add as much garlic as possible. Since there is no sea here in Arizona i have to buy fresh frozen...not quite the same but still good.
1 Kg of mussels
Lots of fresh parsley
2 or 3 large garlic cloves
6 ripe tomatoes (about 600gms)
4 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
4 slices of Italian style bread

Clean the mussels, washing well and getting rid of any 'beard'.
Chop the parsley, garlic and tomatoes.
In a large pot, place the oil, the mixture of garlic and parsley and bring to an almost boil.
Add the chopped tomatoes, some salt and cook for about 10min on a low heat with the cover on, stirring often.
In the meantime, grill the bread and rub with some garlic.
Add the mussels and cook on a rolling heat until the mussels open - about 5-6 mins- stirring from time to time.

Serve in a soup plate in their own juice, adding a slice of bread, some freshly ground pepper and a piece of parsley for decoration.
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All the recipes here have either been sent to me, adapted by me or found on the web. If I know the source I always give credit to the author/website. If you know of a source I may have missed please let me know.