Skip to main content


Showing posts from February, 2017

Cucina Conversations: Baccala` con Peperoni Cruschi (Salt Cod with Crispy Peppers)

I’ve always battled between choosing a sweet or savoury dish at the best of times, and even once I have selected to eat something sweet, my palate immediately craves for something salty afterwards.  So when we decided that this month’s topic for the Cucina Conversations round table was inevitably going to be Carnevale (annual carnival celebration in Italy) and all that it represents, my immediate recipe selection was sweets of course.  Well, after 'toing and froing', the decision was made for me by my taste buds - a savoury dish.  I must admit though that throughout this carnivalesque period I have been frying and indulging in sweets like the light and crispy chiacchiere  that are a family favourite, recipe testing chiacchere ripienewith jam, and of course the addictive castagnole di carnevale that I grew up eating and loving. 
While deciding on a recipe and researching the topic of Carnevale, I was drawn by Pieter Brueghel’s masterpiece titled: La Lotta tra Carnevale e Quaresi…

Chiacchiere Ripiene per il Carnevale

Can I tempt you with some chiacchiere, frappe, cenci, guanti or bugie ripiene?These are only some of the numerous names referring to these type of deep fried, yet light pastries prepared to help mark the carnivalesque festivities. Inspite of the name differences, the ingredients and method of cooking them are pretty much the same.  If you fill them with your favourite jam or nutella - yes, that famous chocolate spread, they take on the added verb ripiene (filled) hence the name chiacchiere ripiene.  

Il Carnevale (carneval) period is one of Italy's biggest winter festivals that commence 40 days before Easter, a final 'party' or one last moment of indulgence before Ash Wednesday and the penitence of Lent.  These sweets are one of the many lavish pleasures eaten around this period and use pantry staple ingredients such as flour, butter, eggs, sugar and some added flavourings, all of which we must be rid of in order to then commence our virtuous abstinence...more about this in…