Sunday, 17 November 2013

Italian dinner; roquefort pasta, rocket salad and tiramisu

Today while having lunch with Ms North, and being her birthday, I thought I could cook something nice for her. I don´t know how but I ended up thinking about an Italian dinner, but after few minutes I had figured out an improvised menu; roquefort pasta, with rocket salad and homemade tiramisu.



  • Mezze Maniche Rigate pasta
  • 2dl cooking cream
  • 50g roquefort
  • 50g parmesan cheese finely grated
  • Black pepper
  • tbsp mascarpone

Rocket salad

  • 300g rocket salad
  • 100g grape tomatoes
  • 3-4 common mushrooms
  • 50g thick grated parmesan cheese
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Olive oil


  • 4 eggs
  • 1dl sugar
  • 400g mascarpone
  • Coffee
  • Rum
  • Orange chocolate
  • Black cocoa powder
  • "ladyfingers"
  • half vanilla bean

 for the "ladyfingers"

  • 3 eggs
  • 0.5dl sugar
  • 0.75dl regular flour
  • Ice sugar  
  • half vanilla bean



Hei, don´t freak out! it is really simple, easy cooking, doesn´t take much time (but baking in the oven or cooling down in the fridge). So let´s start with the "ladyfingers"! I truly have no idea how this is called in Italian or English, in my homeland we call it melindros (wikipedia says ladyfingers...) Whatever the name of that is is what makes the base of the tiramisu. So let´s get started!


Of the 3 eggs necessary for the recipe, separate the yolk from the white saving both. With the yolks, add the sugar and the seeds of the vanilla beans, and whip it up and then add the flour, if possible put it through a stainer it will make the mixture easy to get homogeneous.
Whip the whites till they are ready.

I tried this time not to put baking soda, a tea spoon would have been necessary (mostly because I forgot to buy it, and didn´t had any at home) and the result was not bad, so I´ll leave it up to you.
Mix together carefully, we want to retain the fluffiness of the whites.
Now in a oven tray you have to make this long, narrow shapes. It should be done with a baking bag, but it happens that I don´t have those, so my improvisation led to use a freezing bag (so it is not toxic at contact with food), pour all the mixture in and, in one of the corners of the base, cutting it, creating a small hole, and there you have! a baking bag for 2 cents! 
Add a bit of sugar powder on top and bake it 10-15 min at 200°C


Starts pretty similar as above, separate the yolk from the white, but now we went just 2 of the whites and 4 yolks.
Whip the yolks with the sugar and the vanilla seeds, and the whites separately. Add the mascarpone slowly. When you achieve and homogeneous batter, mix with the whites carefully.
Now maybe the ladyfingers are ready, with a knife open them up and place them in the tray you will use for serving, or if you prefer in individual portions.
Prepare really strong coffee, with an Italian coffee machine or espresso machine. When I mean strong is that you put as much coffee as possible as to be a really concentrated juice. If you ask me a good coffee, LAVAZZA, you can´t go wrong with it; I use this:

Once you have the ladyfingers in the serving tray, add the coffee, cold if possible, adding a bit of strong alcohol (I had a bit of dark rum) don´t add sugar to coffee. I personally don´t like the ladyfingers to swim in coffee, but to be moisture with coffee, so with a cooking brush, I "paint" them till they are a bit soaked.

I added a bit of the batter, and before adding another layer of ladyfingers with coffee on top, I grated a bit of orange chocolate.

Add the rest of the batter and you can decorate with a nice layer of dark cocoa.

Put to fridge couple of hours and it is ready to eat!

Rocket salad

Easy preparation; fine slice the mushrooms, chop in half the grape tomatoes. Place the rocket salad into a bowl and add salt, olive oil and balsamic vinegar, whirl it together and add the mushrooms, tomatoes and thick grated parmesan. Easy, fast and delicious!

Roquefort pasta

Really easy, put 3liters of water to boil with salt, the water has to be as salty as sea water. Cook the pasta (around 125g per person) as long as the brand recommends and meanwhile in a warm pan pour the cream. Add the grated cheeses and stir continuously, it takes a bit to melt so be patient.
Add a little bit of grated nutmeg and taste if a bit of salt and black pepper is need it.
Once the pasta is cooked, add it to the pan with the sauce. If the sauce is too thick add a bit of the water from the pasta.

If you have few ladyfingers left, you can melt a bit of chocolate and decorate them as to serve with the tiramisu.

Hope it hasn´t been too long post today!
Enjoy it!!
Mr. South

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