Krispy Kreme Copycat Doughnuts

Krispy Kreme Copycat Doughnuts
OMG! Krispy Kreme Copycat Doughnuts! So good…

Krispy Kreme Copycat Doughnuts

These Krispy Kreme Copycat Doughnuts are BETTER than those at Krispy Kreme because you can taste all the necessary components of a doughnut – the sugar, the soft, melt-in-your-mouth texture, and the yeasty, fried dough. Amazing.

I’ve never been a fan of Krispy Kreme doughnuts because their doughnuts are too sweet for my taste. Albeit soft, warm, and delicious, these sugar “pillows” are so sweet that they overpower the bready, fried dough underneath. When I lived in Texas, my favorite doughnut shop was Shipley’s Donuts, where you could get your sugar fix as well as taste the soft, fried, yeasty layer, which made them more substantial and fulfilling. Continue reading “Krispy Kreme Copycat Doughnuts”

Nutella Cheesecake

I’m Back!

An indulgent slice of Nutella Cheesecake with a side serving of homemade, vanilla bean ice cream!

In March 2009, I started a food blog at mangiodasola.blogspot.com. After a few months of surprised popularity, I purchased my own domain name only to lose it in 2014. I then changed my site back to mangiodasola.blogspot.com. Losing my domain name really affected my zeal for writing and publishing photos and recipes. Of course I continued to cook and take photos of some meals. However, I could never muster the energy to write or even face my blog again. Continue reading “Nutella Cheesecake”

Buttermilk Waffles

 

If you have visited my blog enough times, you may have noticed that I love using buttermilk in place of regular milk. I got this love of buttermilk from my mother and share in her sentiment that buttermilk makes almost everything better, haha. Now don’t get me wrong, I could NEVER and would NEVER drink the stuff by itself, blech! Also, I am not a fan of its smell. However, I firmly believes buttermilk makes my baked goods more moist and adds another dimension of flavor that regular milk cannot produce. Also, I use brown sugar in place of white sugar for similar reasons.

The batter is quite thick, but the waffles come out fluffy, not dense. I have heard of folding egg whites into the batter to yield fluffier waffles, but I thought using a bit of cake flour would create comparable results. I was very pleased with the end result and am now compelled to buy my own waffle iron (I used my friend’s). I hope you try out this recipe soon! In the meantime, I hope the following close-up shots will convince you to make these waffles on Christmas Eve or the morning of Christmas Day:

So fluffy and light (and blurry. sorry!)!
Ah much better!
YUM! Look at that slightly crispy and caramelized bite!
This shot makes me want to jump and make another batch!

Excuse me while I make some more!
HAPPY HOLIDAYS! ¡FELICES FIESTAS! BUONE FESTE! BOAS FESTAS! JOYEUSES FÊTES!
Buttermilk Waffles
heavily adapted from allrecipes

2 cups all-purpose (AP)/plain flour (I used 1 cup cake flour/1 cup AP flour)
1 tsp salt
4 tsp baking powder
2 Tbsp brown sugar
2 eggs, room temperature
1 1/2 cups buttermilk or regular milk
1/3 cup melted butter
2 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat the waffle iron. In a large bowl whisk together the dry ingredients (flour, salt, and baking powder). In a medium-sized measuring cup, pour (and measure) in the milk, then add the butter, vanilla extract, and eggs. Whisk the eggs into the milk mixture. Pour the wet ingredients into the flour mixture, and mix until combined. Do NOT overmix!

Ladle the batter into the preheated waffle iron, and cook the waffle until ready or until desired doneness. Serve immediately. For leftover waffles, wrap cooled waffles individually in cling wrap and place them in the freezer.

For future consumption, just place the frozen waffle in a toaster or toaster oven until hot and eat! 🙂

Copyright – Memoria James – http://www.mangiodasola.com

Fluffy, Southern Buttermilk Biscuits

Fluffy, Southern Buttermilk Biscuits

biscuits
Biscuits fresh from the oven!

Hi, my name is Memoria, and I LOVE fluffy, southern buttermilk biscuits. In the south, it is not uncommon to see homemade buttermilk biscuits show up on the dining table, especially on Saturday mornings. Because of the buttermilk, butter, flour, and accompanying dishes (e.g., gravy, sausage, eggs, etc.) that pair with biscuits, I do not recommend eating these often. . .unless you have great metabolism, which I don’t.

biscuits

Consequently, I made biscuits with fat-free, Greek yogurt, and they came out so well that I had promised to make them with yogurt from there on out. Well, I fibbed. Although those biscuits were indeed amazing (and I do plan to continue making them with yogurt), I felt as a Texan, food blogger, it was my duty to have a recipe for Southern, traditional, buttermilk biscuits.

biscuits

Also, these biscuits were so gorgeous, I had to share these photos and recipe with you all. The layers, texture, and flavor were perfect. They were so soft, tasty, and fluffy that no extra butter (because that’s how we do it in the South) was needed. Instead, I tried one plain, one with pure jam (homemade or natural, Bonne Maman bluebery jam), and one with eggs, cheese, and turkey sausage.

biscuits
Do you want a sausage, egg biscuit or a biscuit with jelly?

All the varieties were fantastic, but my favorites were with jam and plain. PLEASE try out this recipe ASAP! Then try it with fat-free yogurt and compare the goodness! Both are great! ¡Hasta luego! 🙂

biscuits
Buttermilk biscuits with grape jelly!

Fluffy, Southern Buttermilk Biscuits 

(I always halve this recipe; full recipe below)

250 grams (2 cups) unbleached all-purpose flour (or half wheat flour!)
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 Tbsp baking powder (without aluminum/aluminium)
1 tsp kosher salt or 1 teaspoon salt
85 grams (6 Tbsp) unsalted butter, very cold or frozen
237 ml (1 cup) cold buttermilk, approximately

PREPARE COLD BUTTER AND BUTTERMILK MIXTURE: Grate the butter with a cheese grater or cut the butter into small cubes. Place the butter in the freezer. Measure out the buttermilk mixture, and place it in the refrigerator as you prepare the dry ingredients.

DRY INGREDIENTS/BUTTER INTEGRATION: Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl or in the bowl of a food processor. Add the grated/cubed butter into the dry ingredients and mix into the dry mixture with a fork or pastry cutter until the butter bits resemble small pebbles. If using a food processor, just pulse a few times until this consistency is achieved.

ADDITION OF LIQUIDS: Next, add the cold, buttermilk mixture and stir until just combined. DO NOT OVERMIX! Make sure the mixture is not too dry or too wet. Adjust accordingly. The biscuit dough should be wet.

PAT IT OUT!: Turn the dough out onto a floured board or clear wrap/cling wrap. Gently, gently PAT (do NOT roll with a rolling pin) the dough out until it’s about 1″ thick (I fold the dough using the cling/clear wrap so that my warm hands do not directly touch the dough or warm the butter. I also prefer a thick dough to create more layers.). Fold the dough about 5 times, gently press the dough down to a 1″ thick.

BISCUIT FORMATION: Use a round cutter to cut into rounds OR with a sharp knife, cut the dough into circles and/or squares! (For the leftover dough, I fold the dough together 2 more times and then cut them into squares with a dough cutter or a knife. Most recipes say the leftover dough does not yield great, aesthetic results, but even my leftover, square biscuits came out perfectly because I did not refold it too many times.)

COOKIE SHEET PREPARATION: Lightly brush the cookie sheet with butter, and place the biscuits on a cookie sheet. If you desire the sides of the biscuits to be soft, put them on the sheet touching each other. If you like”crusty” sides, put them about 1 inch apart.

PREHEAT OVEN: Place the cookie tray of biscuits in the freezer or refrigerator while the oven preheats to 450F/230C. This step will allow the butter in the dough to remain cold and to create a flaky biscuits with light layers.

BAKE AND ENJOY!: Once the oven is at temperature, bake the biscuits for about 10-12 minutes.

Items I used (minus grater) to make these biscuits may be found below; the OXO cheese grater is on my wishlist.

Copyright – Memoria James – http://www.mangioeviaggiodasola.com

Brown Sugar Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

Brown Sugar Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

I know I said that the Mint Oreo Ice Cream was my most bestest, favoritest flavor yet, but I think I’ve changed my mind or at least this brown sugar Vanilla Bean Ice Cream may be a close second.

Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

While I was making regular vanilla bean ice cream using my old-standby recipe, I thought, “hmmm, I wonder how this would taste with brown sugar instead of white sugar…”, and it was a great decision! I don’t think I can go back to the old standby anymore; it was THAT good!

Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

I’ve made it this way two times already – once for a Friendsgiving party and the last time was for Thanksgiving at my stepmother’s house. On both occasions this Vanilla Bean Ice Cream remained with other people so I could only dream about having another bite. I can’t make it at home because I’ll just eat the whole thing in one or two days haha.

Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

When you start making this Vanilla Bean Ice Cream, initially the amount will seem like a paltry amount because you add the cream later. Also, the ice cream maker creates more air into the custard, so there will be enough for everyone (or just yourself!).

Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

Please try out this amazingly, rich Vanilla Bean Ice Cream! If you don’t have vanilla beans, you can use vanilla bean paste or add more extract when you add the heavy cream. It is so rich that you’ll need only a scoop or two at a time.

Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
After taking one bite of this ice cream, my friend/colleague said that it reminded her of cookie dough ice cream without the bits of cookie dough. Because of the brown sugar, I would agree that it does seem a bit like the cold base of a chocolate chip cookie dough. You could add in chocolate chips, nuts, or whatever add-ins you like; however, try this recipe out without add-ins the first time around! You won’t regret it!
Don’t forget to check cout a plethora of other ice cream flavors such as traditional vanilla bean (twice), espresso, milk chocolate, Mexican chocolate, gelato al limone, chocolate chip cookie dough, coffee, double chocolate, mint chocolate chip (w/extract), and Mint Oreo Ice Cream!

Brown Sugar Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

adapted from Ice Cream!; it is my go-to recipe for vanilla-based ice cream

1 1/4 (300ml) whole milk
1 vanilla bean (if none, add 1 more tsp of vanilla extract to below amount when you add the cream)
4 large egg yolks (save egg whites for macarons, meringues, or omelettes!)
1/2 cup (100g) BROWN sugar (I used light brown sugar)
1 1/4 (300ml) heavy cream
1-2 tsp vanilla extract or vanilla bean

Put the milk, vanilla seeds, and vanilla bean (if using) in a medium saucepan, and heat gently to near-boiling point. Remove the saucepan from the heat, and allow the vanilla to infuse for 15 minutes.

In a separate, heatproof bowl, beat the egg yolks and sugar, using a whisk or electric beater, until thick and pale. Gradually beat the milk into the egg mixture.

Slower method: Place the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, and continue stirring until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon. (book’s instructions)
OR
Quicker method: Pour the milk/egg mixture back into the saucepan over medium to medium-high heat, and stir the mixture until it coats the back of a wooden spoon. (this is what I did). This took about 5-10 minutes. Remove the bowl from the heat.

Transfer the hot mixture into a bowl (you can put the bowl over a bowl of ice to cool it down quickly); stir in the cream and vanilla extract or paste.

Cover the surface directly with plastic wrap or waxed paper to prevent a skin from forming. Allow the custard to cool completely by refrigerating mixture for 4 hours to overnight.

After the custard has chilled, churn it in an ice cream maker, according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Serve immediately as a soft serve, or transfer to a freezer container; cover the surface directly with waxed paper or foil, and put in the freezer.

Copyright – Memoria James – http://www.mangioeviaggiodasola.com

Applesauce Pancakes

In the United States, most of us will be celebrating Thanksgiving Day (Tday) on the 27th of November, and I’m sure you’ve seen many Tday recipes floating around the blogosphere.

In the States, most people cook and eat large amounts of food with families and friends from near and afar. It is a great day to appreciate and be thankful for what we have whether it be little or too much.

These apple pancakes are a good meal to have the day before or the day after Thanksgiving (or any day!). I amped the recipe that came from Everday Food by substituting milk with buttermilk and by adding fall spices and vanilla extract. Also the recipe calls for applesauce, which prompted me to use my crockpot applesauce!

So whether you’re celebrating a holiday or not and whether it is fall or spring in your hemisphere, I suggest conjuring up the ingredients for these pancakes along with some fluffy eggs and lightly burnt (just how I like it!) turkey sausage! Feel free to eat the pancakes plain, with syrup, or honey!

Applesauce Pancakes
adapted from Everday Food
2 cups (250 g) all-purpose flour
3 Tbsp granulated/caster sugar
2 tsp of cinnamon or pumpkin spice
1 Tbsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 large eggs, room temperature
1-2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups (473 ml) buttermilk or milk, room temperature
3/4 cup (177 ml) applesauce
4 Tbsp (43 g) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
Optional topping: Sour cream (did not use) or applesauce
Preheat oven to 250 degrees F/121 degrees C. Whisk together dry ingredients, including the sugar. Add in wet ingredients and combine until combined and still lumpy. DO NOT OVERMIX! There should still be lumps. 
Heat a cast-iron skillet, flat-top, or griddle over medium heat. Brush surface with butter or cooking spray. 
Pour batter onto griddle 1/3 – 1/2 cup at a time. Cook batter until bubbles form around the edges (2-3 minutes), then flip pancake over and cook for approximately 3 minutes. Repeat with the remaining batter and allow previous pancakes to stay warm in the 250/121 degree oven.
Feel free to serve with sour cream, applesauce, syrup, honey, or plain!
Copyright – Memoria James – http://www.mangiodasola.com

Crockpot Applesauce

As a child and young teenager, I loved applesauce. I anticipated the soft, sweet, cinnamony, gentle taste as I eagerly ripped open the aluminum top of the plastic, kid-sized package. One second later, I had eaten all of the applesauce and was always disappointed there was no more.

Now that I’m what many would consider a seasoned adult (my mom would object), I am no longer a fan of applesauce. . .that is, not the store-bought kind. I originally tried out this apple dish as a means to make apple juice/cider while making applesauce a byproduct. After much frustration with the muslin cloth and the realization of how little liquid yielded from the 10-14 cooked apples, I decided to stick with applesauce.


But that very little bit of juice/cider that managed to seep drip through the cloth was really like liquid gold! It was thick, sweet, and oh so flavorful. I hope to try making more apple cider soon. Anyway, when I tasted how AMAZING the juice/cider was, my curiosity was peaked. I tried the applesauce and SWOONED! I couldn’t believe it had only 2 tablespoons of sugar instead of the 1/4-1/2 cup called for in other recipes. It was perfect.


It was thick and soothing to my tongue and throat. It had a perfect balance of sweetness and cinnamon, clove, ginger, allspice, and other fall-like flavors. This applesauce was so amazing that only a couple of days later, I bought more apples to make more! The other great thing about this recipe is that you don’t need to peel the apples. Just cut them, place them in the crockpot, squeeze a bit of fresh, lemon juice on top along with brown sugar and spices, and allow it to cook and fill your house with the rich, delicious perfume of fall, apples, cinnamon, and love :). I hope you give this recipe a try!

Crockpot Applesauce
by mangiodasola
10-14 small- to medium-sized apples (I have now used Jonathons and McIntosh apples)
1/2-1 small lemon
2 Tbsp brown sugar, optional (depends on how sweet your apples are)
cinnamon to taste
pumpkin spice (cloves, allspice, ginger, and cinnamon) to taste
Cut the apples (no need to peel them*; they will be pulverized later). Place apples into the crockpot. Squeeze lemon juice on top of the sliced apples. Add sugar, cinnamon, and other spices. Allow apples to cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours. Pulverize the softened apples with a hand blender or transfer them to a blender. Blend softened apples until they reach your desired consistency. Eat the applesauce warm or cold! Enjoy!
*If you prefer a chunkier applesauce and are not a fan of apple skins, then you should peel the apples before cutting them. My applesauce was blended well enough that I rarely tasted any skin. It was perfect for me. Also, the skin has extra nutrients!
Copyright – Memoria James – http://www.mangiodasola.com

Mint Oreo Ice Cream

Mint Oreo Ice Cream

Homemade Fresh Mint Oreo Ice Cream

I was going to blog about some yummy pancakes I had made the other day but once I sampled this Mint Oreo ice cream, I pushed that thought aside. I’ve made other GREAT ice creams such as traditional Vanilla Bean (also paired with Blackberry Cobbler), Vanilla Bean made with brown sugar, Milk Chocolate, Chocolate Chip Dough, Espresso and more; but this one is definitely my favorite flavor. Also, now that cold weather has taken over many parts of the Northern Hemisphere, I felt it best to share this recipe before it gets even colder.

Mint Oreo Ice Cream

With that said, I can eat ice cream in any type of weather. In fact, I remember craving a gelato al cocco (coconut) on a cold October day, and my boyfriend was shocked. However, I was comforted by the fact that there were other people in the gelateria eating gelato, and they weren’t tourists.Mint Oreo Ice Cream

I was inspired to make this ice cream after having tried the Mint Chocolate Cookie Ice Cream from Ben and Jerry. After taking one bite, I thought, “OMG, this is so good! I need to try making this at home!” LOL! Who else does that? Hello? Just me?

Mint Oreo Ice Cream

It starts with infusing fresh mint leaves with whole milk in a pot. Then you temper the eggs and add the cream. Chill the mixture before pouring it in the ice cream maker. Add in the Oreos. Enjoy as a soft serve fresh from the machine or freeze it for a few more hours like I did.

Mint Oreo Ice Cream

Don’t forget to check cout a plethora of other ice cream flavors such as vanilla bean (twice), espresso, milk chocolate, Mexican chocolate, gelato al limone, chocolate chip cookie dough, coffee, double chocolate, mint chocolate chip (w/extract), and this Mint Oreo Ice Cream!

So, if you’re in one of the cold regions of the world, bundle up, and make this ice cream today! If you’re in a hotter region, invite me over, and we’ll make it together! Hah!

MINT OREO ICE CREAM
mint base recipe adapted from the Vanilla Bean recipe

1 1/4 (300ml) whole milk
2.3 oz of mint leaves
4 large egg yolks, room temperature (save egg yolks in the freezer!)
1/2 cup (100g) granulated or caster sugar
1 1/4 (300ml) heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla extract (optional)
30 Oreos, chopped (up to you how many you’d like in your ice cream!)

Put the milk and fresh mint in a medium saucepan, and heat gently to near-boiling point. Remove the saucepan from the heat, and allow the mint to infuse for 15 minutes.

In a separate, heatproof bowl, beat the egg yolks and sugar, using a whisk or electric beater, until thick and pale. Gradually beat the milk into the egg mixture.

Place the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, and continue stirring until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon. (book’s instructions)
OR
Pour the milk/egg mixture back into the saucepan, and stir the mixture until it coats the back of a wooden spoon. (this is what I did). This took about 5-10 minutes.

Remove the bowl from the heat; stir in the cold heavy cream and vanilla extract. Cover the surface of the mixture directly with plastic wrap or waxed paper to prevent a skin from forming. Allow the ice cream custard to cool completely by refrigerating mixture for 4 hours to overnight.

Once cold, churn mixture in an ice cream maker, according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer soft-serve ice cream to a freezer container and stir in chopped Oreos (as many as you’d like! I used 2-2 1/2 rows). Cover the ice cream directly with waxed paper or foil, then the container top, and put in the freezer.

Copyright – Memoria James – http://www.mangioeviaggiodasola.com

Pan de muerto Revisited

This weekend (el primero y 2 de noviembre), the day after Halloween, a very sacred holiday will take place – El día de los muertos. Although I am not Mexican, I celebrate and respect this holiday even more than Halloween. Why? Because I am comforted by the idea of honoring loved ones who have passed on and “bringing them back” into the present world via a multitude of tangible symbols such as altars showcasing loved ones’ photos and momentos, skullface paintings, sugar skulls. I especially enjoy the culinary dishes that are usually present around these two days, such as mole and pan de muerto.
In 2009 (whoa!), I made pan de muerto for the first time. I enjoyed forming the “bones” on top of the round domes of dough. The bread was delicious as well :o). This year, however, I decided to make pan de muerto using a different recipe that has now overshadowed the previous pan de muerto.

The inside of this bread is dense yet soft; the texture reminds one of the inside of panettone. It is best to eat warm and with leche, atole, champurrado, café, or chocolate caliente, but the bread is good cold as well (my students can attest to that!). I also preferred this recipe over the previous one for another reason: the simplicity of ingredients. In the old recipe, I remember driving everywhere for special ingredients that I never used again. With the current pan de muertorecipe, however, the only non-everyday ingredient, for some, is anise seeds, and many of you probably already have this ingredient sitting in your pantry and waiting to be used by you in such a recipe as this one ;o)!

Even if you’re not Mexican, try out this lovely bread and dedicate it to a loved one who is no longer physically present on this earth. You two can enjoy eating it together. 🙂 In the meantime, watch this video I show to my students every year around this time. It is a cute way to express the importance of this 2-day holiday of remembrance. Then come back here and make this bread! 😀

I am submitting this post to Yeastspotting!

 PAN DE MUERTO
translated and slightly adapted by All Recipes México (en español)
  • ¼ taza de mantequilla / ¼ cup of butter
  • ¼ taza de leche / ¼ cup of milk
  • ¼ taza de agua tibia (45°C/113°F) / ¼ cup of warm water (45°C/113°F)
  • 3 tazas harina / 3 cups all-purpose/plain flour
  • 1 ¼ cucharadita de levadura / 1 ¼ tsp yeast 
  • ½ cucharadita de sal / ½ tsp of salt
  • 2 cucharaditas de semillas de anís / 2 tsp anise seeds
  • ¼ taza de azúcar blanca / ¼ cup white sugar
  • 2 huevos batidos / 2 eggs, beaten
  • 2 cucharaditas de ralladura de naranja / 2 tsp of grated orange peel

 Para el barniz / For the glaze:

  • ¼ taza de azúcar blanca / ¼ cup white sugar
  • ¼ taza de jugo de naranja / ¼ cup fresh orange juice
  • 1 cucharadita de ralladura de naranja / 1 tsp grated orange peel
  • 2 cucharaditas de azúcar blanca / 2 tsp of white sugar
  • 2 cucharaditas de canela (opcional) / 2 tsp of cinnamon (optional)
1.     Calienta la leche y la mantequilla en una cacerola mediana, hasta que la mantequilla se derrita. Retira del fuego y agrega el agua tibia. La mezcla deberá tener una temperatura de 45 °C.
      Heat the milk and butter in a medium-sized pot until the butter has melted completely. Remove the pot from the burner. Add the warm water, and allow the mixture to cool to 45 °C/113 °F.
2.     Mezcla 1 taza de harina, levadura, sal, semillas de anís y ¼ de taza de azúcar en un tazón grande. Envuelve la mezcla de leche tibia, luego los huevos y 2 cucharaditas de ralladura de naranja, hasta que estén bien mezclados. Incorpora ½ taza de harina y sigue agregando más harina hasta que la masa esté suave.
      In a large mixing bowl, mix 1 cup of the flour, yeast, salt, anise seeds, and ¼ cup of sugar. Blend well before mixing in the room-temperature eggs and 2 tsp. of grated orange peel. Mix well. Next, incorporate ½ cup of flour and keep adding more flour (½ cup at a time) until the dough becomes soft and manageable.
3.     Coloca la masa en una superficie enharinada y amasa hasta que alcance una consistencia suave y elástica.
      If using a stand mixer, change to a dough hook and knead the dough for 6-8 minutes. If not using a stand mixer, place the dough on a floured-surface and knead the bread for 10 minutes or until the dough is soft and elastic and strong strands of gluten have formed.
The freshly kneaded dough before I placed it in the refrigerator for a few hours. Look at the specks of orange & anise seeds!
4.     Pon la masa en un recipiente ligeramente engrasado, cubre plástico adherente y deja reposar de 1 a 2 horas hasta que duplique su volumen. “Poncha” la masa con tu puño y forma una bola redonda con una bolita en el centro. Coloca la masa en una charola para hornear, cubre con plástico adherente y deja que repose de nuevo en un lugar tibio durante 1 hora o hasta que duplique su tamaño.
      [SUPPLEMENTARY INSTRUCTIONS] Once the dough has been well-kneaded, place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl (I use my stand mixer bowl) and cover it with plastic wrap or a clean towel. Allow it to rest and rise for 1-2 hours (I left my dough in the refrigerator for about 5-6 hours, and it was fine. The dough is supposed to rise slower in the fridge. You could also leave it in the fridge overnight (check the dough level every few hours though!) and do the next steps on the following day. Allow the dough to come to room temperature first, which should take about 2 hours.).
      Once the dough has risen, deflate the dough and form 7 small dough balls or 4 large balls (I doubled this recipe, so I had seven large dough balls).
Pardon the bad lighting. I made these photos at night.
      BREAD AND BONES FORMATION: Divide dough in 7 small equal parts (or 4 large) (I weighed the dough and divided the total weight by 7 (222 grams/dough ball for me). 6 of those parts will become your loaves and the last one will be used to make the decorations. Form the 6 loaves (or 4 large), place them on a greased baking sheet and let them double in size, covered.
      To form the “bones”, take the extra ball of dough and separate it into 14 parts (I weighed the dough and divided the total weight by 14) roll 12 of the dough balls into a snake-like shape (2 per dough ball). Then roll the “snake” with your finger while applying pressure to form separations in the snake/dough. For the remaining two small balls of dough, divide them into 6 parts and roll them into a ball.
      The recipe doesn’t call for an egg wash, but I used one (one egg + 1 tsp heavy cream), but you can use just water, milk, or egg. The egg wash is needed not only for color, but also to attach the bones and ball to the bread ball.
      Once the dough ball has been brushed with the egg wash, place the bones on the bread in a crisscross fashion. Then place the ball of dough on top.
Shaped dough with “bones” and egg wash.
5.     Hornea a 180 °C durante de 35 a 45 minutos. Retira del horno, deja que se enfríe un poco y barniza la superficie.
      Bake the bread in a preheated oven of 180 °C/350 °F. Remove from oven and allow it to cool on a cooling rack. While it cools or near the end of the baking time, prepare the glaze . . .
Fresh from the oven w/o glaze. For the first 10 minutes, the loaves were too high in the oven! Don’t make my mistake!
6.     BARNIZ: Para preparar el barniz, mezcla ¼ de azúcar, jugo de naranja y 1 cucharadita de ralladura de naranja en una cacerola pequeña. Deja que hierva a fuego medio durante 2 minutos. Barniza el pan con una brocha mientras aún está tibio. Espolvorea el pan barnizado con el resto del azúcar blanca.
      GLAZE: To prepare the glaze, mix ¼ sugar, orange juice, and 1 tsp. of grated orange peel in a small pot. Allow the sugar mixture to boil on medium heat for 2 minutes. Brush the warm bread with this glaze and then roll the bread in sugar and cinnamon (if using).
Copyright – Memoria James – http://www.mangiodasola.com

Bucatini alla Carbonara (2 versioni)


Ciao di nuovo! It’s been another long while since I’ve posted. I have not been cooking anything interesting. In fact before making this yummy Carbonara, I made a mushy pot of black beans and brown rice . . . trust me; it wasn’t blog-worthy. Also these past few weeks have been stressful because of constant teaching and grading.  So in order to retain the little bit of sanity I have left from my busy schedule, I still think about my blissful months in Reggio Calabria, Italy.

MARIANGELA VERSION: While in Reggio Calabria, my boyfriend’s mom, Mariangela (the same who shared her pizza dough and pizza recipe with me), asked me what was my favorite pasta dish, and without hesitation, I said, “Pasta alla Carbonara.” For my birthday, she surprised me with this dish but made it with proscuitto instead of pancetta and spaghetti in place of bucatini. It was AMAZING, and I knew I wanted to recreate this dish upon my return to the States.

In the past, every time I made Carbonara, I would have to go on a long search for guanciale or pork cheek, the official meat used in traditional Carbonara, and I could never find it. I am confronted with perplexed stares and am asked to repeat my request multiple times by supermarket workers. I have always had to resort to pancetta, but now that I have tried Carbonara with proscuitto, I am happy that I no longer need to look far and wide for guanciale because I have found a good, substitute version of traditional Carbonara.

Even though the Carbonara originated in Rome, when I think of this dish with proscuitto, I think of the best moments of my life in Reggio Calabria…

TRADITIONAL VERSION: I started with the “Mariangela version” of Carbonara because it is a nostalgic dish for me; it is my preferred version, and it is not considered the traditional way to make the dish.

A traditional Bucatini alla Carbonara is comprised of bucatini (the pasta), guanciale(pork cheek), parmiggiano reggiano or pecorino romano or both (the cheese), eggs (the sauce), black pepper (spice), and pasta water, if needed. However, many Italians may substitute guanciale with pancetta, or in Mariangela’s case, with proscuitto.

In the States, however, Italian-American restaurants serve Carbonara with pancetta or bacon, cream, and sometimes peas or other add-ins! *gasp!* I much prefer the more traditional way or with prosciutto served with a crusty knob of hot bread.
Bucatini: A few weeks ago, I was happy to find bucatini, which is the pasta used in the traditional version of Carbonara. My boyfriend encouraged me to use spaghetti instead of this type of pasta, but I wanted to try it out for myself and for the blog :).
As you can see in the photos, this pasta is much thicker than spaghetti, and there are holes in the middle. Once I took a bite of the Carbonara, I understood immediately why my boyfriend had discouraged me from using it!Even though it is more traditional to use bucatini, in the future, I will use spaghetti since they are thinner and more manageable to eat and enjoy.
Bucatini alla Carbonara
75-115 grams of spaghetti or bucatini per person (reserve some of the pasta water)
1/2 Tbsp of a light oil such as sunflower oil (I had only extra virgin olive oil on hand)
2-4 Tbsp guanciale, pancetta, or proscuitto
1 large egg per person
2-3 Tbsp parmigiano reggiano per person
black pepper to taste (q.b.)
Boil water and prepare pasta. Be sure to salt your water until it is almost as salty as the Mediterranean Sea (as they say). Once the pasta is 3 minutes away from being done, start cooking your pork of choice in a hot skillet brushed with light oil (I used a small amount of extra virgin olive oil, but Mariangela used soybean oil because it is lighter.).
While the pork is cooking, put the grated cheese and egg in a bowl and mix together well. Once the meat is ready, remove the skillet from heat and transfer the cooked pasta to the skillet. Stir the pasta and pork together well. Next pour the egg and cheese mixture on top of the pasta and pork and mix well. Serve immediately and sprinkle the top of the dish with plenty of fresh black pepper.

Copyright – Memoria James – http://www.mangiodasola.com