Recipes From Our Kitchen

July 2014

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~Recipes from Chef Barbara’s Kitchen

Bignè Salate Con Zucchine e Pecorino

Savory Bigné With Zucchini & Pecorino


Yield: Makes 24 Bigné


  • 250 ml of water
  • 60 g butter
  • 3 eggs
  • Sea salt
  • Pepper
  • Butter to grease baking sheet
  • Zucchini
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 24 small pieces of Pecorino cheese


  • Heat the water in a pan and add the butter and a pinch of salt. Bring to the boil. Sieve in the flour. Using a wooden spoon, mix very quickly until all the liquid has been absorbed and continue beating until you obtain a smooth mixture with no lumps. Continue to cook over a medium heat, beating continuously, until the mixture comes away from the bottom and sides of the pan and makes a sizzling noise. Turn the dough onto a damp work surface and flatten with the back of a wooden spoon. When the dough is tepid, place in a bowl and beat in the eggs, one at a time, using an electric mixer until the dough becomes smooth and shiny.
  • Prepare a buttered baking sheet. Place the dough in a piping bag with a plain nozzle, and pipe the mixture into small balls, eclairs or rings in lines across the baking sheet. Bake in an oven preheated to 190°C for about 20 minutes. Meanwhile cut the zucchini into small pieces and sauté in a pan with a little extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper until cooked. Once the zucchini have cooled, spoon them inside the bigné along with a small piece of Pecorino cheese. Just before you need them, heat briefly in the oven then serve.

Gnudi Burro e Salvia

Florentine Dumplinsh With Butter & Sage


Number of servings (yield): 4


  • 200g of spinach
  • 300g ricotta cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese, plus extra for garnish
  • 4 Tbsp ’00’ flour
  • Nutmeg
  • Sea salt and pepper
  • 50g Butter
  • Fresh sage leaves


  • Nowadays ‘ravioli’ are stuffed cases of dough served as a first course, but formerly it wasn’t so, at least in Florence. To get a good dish of “ravioli” you don’t need to prepare any dough: 1 portion of swiss-chard or spinach, boiled and squeezed well, is sufficient. Chop the spinach or chard finely, then mix it with the ricotta cheese, eggs, flour, Parmesan cheese, a pinch of salt and a hint of freshly ground nutmeg. Knead well. Shape this mixture into small balls and coat them with flour. In the meantime bring to the boil some lightly salted water, then add a few ‘ravioli’ at a time. When the ravioli are cooked they will come to the surface. Remove them from the water with a slotted spoon and place them into individual soup plates. Season them with melted butter and sage (tomato sauce is also good). Sprinkle with a little grated Parmesan cheese and serve.

Involtini di Pollo allo Spiedo

Chicken Roll Up Skewers


Number of servings (yield): 4


  • 400g chicken or turkey breast in thin slices
  • Olive oil
  • Fresh sage
  • 1 eggplant or zucchini, cut into cubes
  • Sea salt and pepper
  • 50g flour (rice flour would be also good)
  • Stale bread cut into cubes


  • Flatten the meat and place a sage leaf and a sprinkling of salt and pepper on each slice, then roll up and drag in flour place to the side. Meanwhile, brush the eggplant and bread cubes with a little extra virgin olive oil. Put the chicken rolls, bread and eggplant, alternating each one as you go. Place over a high flame, lightly brushing them over with oil as they cook. In order to prepare a larger turkey or chicken roll you can add a slice of roasted ham, sautéed spinach or swiss chard and tie up with string. Roll in a little flour and cook on a high flame to crisp, than low the flame and leave it cook. Once cooked, serve immediately.

Cestini di Cioccolato Con Mascapone

Chocolate baskets with Mascarpone Cream


Yield: 6-8


  • 200 g bitter chocolate
  • 500 g mascarpone cheese
  • 4 eggs
  • 100 g sugar


  • Separate the eggs and beat the yolks with the sugar. Add the mascarpone cheese and mix well until you have a cream. In a separate bowl, whip the egg whites until stiff then gently fold them into the cream. Place in the refrigerator.
    Meanwhile, melt the chocolate in a bain marie at a temperature not over 50/60°C. Using a pastry brush, paint the inside of a muffin mould with the liquid chocolate and put in the refrigerator for about 15 minutes. Once the chocolate is solid, remove from the mould, place the cream inside and, if desired, serve with small cookies and chocolate leaves as decoration.