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From:         	Diane
Date sent:     	Fri, 12 Nov 1999 20:57:17 EST
Subject:       	Italian cookie and panforte
To:            	phaedrus

> As a  child, my grandmother would make round dough, slit the sides all
> around and boil them. Then she would make a powder sugar and milk
> coating. The cookie was very hard, but was great when dunked in coffee.
> Can anyone help? Is there a recipe out there for panforte? I would like
> to try and make it. Thanks    Gram was from Bari and Gramps from
> Tuscany.  Diane 

Hi Diane,

Below is a recipe for panforte. Below that are a couple of cookie recipes, although I don't think that they are exactly what you are looking for. Can you remember exactly what she called the cookies?


PanForte Di Siena
 Serve 6-8

 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
 1 1/2 cups whole unblanched almonds
 1/2 cup whole unblanched hazelnuts
 2 cups candied citrus  peel, coarsely chopped
 1 teaspoon fresh, grated lemon peel
 1 teaspoon cinnamon
 1/4 teaspoon cloves
 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
 3/4 cup sugar
 3/4 cup light honey

 Butter bottom and sides of an 9" springform pan that has 
 removable  bottom and sides.  Line bottom of pan with parchment
 paper, coat with 1 Tablespoon butter.  Melt chocolate chips over
 low heat and spread melted chocolate over the bottom of the pan
 and set aside to cool.  In a large, heat-proof bowl, mix almonds
 with candied citrus peel, fresh, grated lemon peel, cinnamon,
 cloves, nutmeg, and flour until nuts and peel are thoroughly coated
 with flour.

 Combine sugar,. honey and 2 tablespoons butter in a deep pan and
 cook over medium/high heat, stirring frequently until mixture
 reaches the hard-ball stage (265 degrees).  Remove from heat and
 quickly pour hot sugar and honey mixture into nut and citrus peel
 and stir to coat thoroughly.  Pour into prepared springform pan
 and spread evenly.  Bake in a 300 degree oven for 45-50 minutes.
 Remove from oven and let cake set for about one hour or until cool.

 PanForte should be firm to touch in center.  Loosen sides of pan,
 then invert cake onto a large sheet of wax paper.  Remove pan 
 bottom but leave brown paper.  Serve after it is completely cooled,
 or wrap with wax paper, then plastic to store for up to two or three
Tatales  (Italian  Cookies)

 Ingredients : 
 4 1/2 c. flour
 5 tsp. baking powder
 1/2 tsp. salt
 6 eggs
 1/2 lb. butter
 2 tsp. vanilla

 Preparation : 
    Mix all dry ingredients first.   Make well in center of dry
 mixture and add wet ingredients.  Mix well!!  With well floured
 hands, form small round balls and place on cookie sheet.  Bake at
 325 degrees for 8-10 minutes or until bottoms are light brown. 
 Icing and sprinkles may be added.  Yields 5 dozen cookies. 
  Italian  Cookies

 Ingredients : 
 6 to 8 c. flour
 25 tbsp. sugar
 25 tbsp. oil
 12 eggs
 2 tsp. vanilla
 3 tsp. baking powder (full)
 2 tbsp. salt

 Preparation : 
    Sift dry ingredients.  Set aside.  Beat eggs, sugar, and oil. 
 Add dry ingredients.  Mix well and make a soft dough.  With
 hands, shape little rings and bake on greased cookie sheet at 375
 degrees for 12 minutes or until light brown.  Frost with a milk,
 powdered sugar and vanilla frosting, or use anise oil for flavor

Broccoli Casserole

Date sent:      Sun, 07 Nov 1999 11:40:41 -0800
From:           James 
To:             phaedrus
Subject:        Casserole

> Please send recipes for broccoli casserole

Hi James,

Okay... Here are five.


Broccoli  Casserole

 Ingredients : 
 4 boxes frozen broccoli pieces
 4 tbsp. minced onion
 2 cans cream of celery soup
 4 eggs, beaten until light
 2 c. grated sharp cheese
 1 c. Kraft mayonnaise
 Dash Worcestershire sauce

 Preparation : 
    Defrost broccoli, either overnight in refrigerator or by
 microwave. Combine remaining ingredients and fold in broccoli.  
 Pam a 9 x 13 casserole and add broccoli ingredients.  Bake 350
 degrees for 30 to 45 minutes.  You can add chicken, for each 
 casserole use 8 chicken breasts (Price Club variety) and omit 2
 boxes of the broccoli.  Chicken breasts, should be cooked and
 diced.  Serves 12 to 15 people.
 Broccoli  Casserole

 Ingredients : 
 2 pkgs. frozen broccoli or 3 med. stalks fresh broccoli
 6 eggs
 6 tbsp. all purpose flour
 1/4 c. margarine
 8 oz. American cheese, chopped or grated
 12 oz. cottage cheese

 Preparation : 
   Cook broccoli in salt water until tender.  Drain.  Mix eggs,
 flour, butter and cheese (American and cottage) together in a 
 bowl.  Add drained broccoli.  Mix.  Pour into an 8"x12"x2" glass
 baking dish and bake in a 350 degree oven for 45 minutes.  The
 dish should be greased on sides and bottom before putting
 mixture in.  Yield: 6 servings.   
 Broccoli  Casserole

 Ingredients : 
 2 pkgs. frozen broccoli florets
 1 can cream of mushroom soup
 1/2 c. sharp Cheddar cheese, grated
 1/2 c. mayonnaise
 1 tbsp. onion, grated
 2 eggs
 1/3 c. Ritz crackers, crushed
 2 tbsp. butter

 Preparation : 
   Cook broccoli until partially done, about 5 minutes.  Mix together
 the undiluted soup, cheese, mayonnaise, onion and eggs.  Place
 broccoli in 1 1/2 quart casserole.  Then top with mixture.  Sprinkle top
 with crushed crackers and dot with cheese.  Bake at 375 degrees for 45
 minutes.  Serves 6.  
 Broccoli Casserole

 Ingredients : 
 2 boxes chopped broccoli
 1 c. crumbled Pepperidge Farm stuffing
 1 egg (beat slightly)
 1 tbsp. grated onion
 1/4 lb. butter, melted
 3/4 c. grated sharp cheese (add more, if desired)
 1 can cream of mushroom soup
 Black pepper
 Top with stuffing crumbs
 Dot with butter

 Preparation : 
   Cook and drain 2 boxes chopped broccoli.  Add other 
 ingredients.  Bake 350 for 30 minutes or until bubbly.  
 Broccoli  Casserole

 Ingredients : 
 1 lg. onion, chopped fine
 1/2 stick butter
 1 can cream of mushroom soup
 2 pkgs. garlic cheese 
 2 pkgs. chopped broccoli (from freezer case)
 1 (4 oz.) can mushrooms
 1/2 c. bread crumbs

 Preparation : 
   Saute onions in butter.  Add broccoli and cook until tender.  Add
 mushroom soup, cheese and season to taste.  Pour in casserole. 
 Sprinkle bread crumbs on top.  Bake at 300 degrees until bubbly.    

Bread & Metal

From:           	Kari
Date sent:      	Sun, 7 Nov 1999 14:32:42 EST
Subject:        	question for you
To:             	phaedrus

> My daughter is doing a science project on testing a bread starter that
> says not to mix with a metal spoon or in a metal bowl.  She conducted
> the experiment three times doing one recipe with metal utensils and one
> with plastic utensils.  Can you give me any scientific reason why metal
> should not be used.  In that particular recipe, it didn't affect the
> final product very much.
> Thanks for your time.
> Kari

Hi Kari,

Every sourdough starter recipe that I have says "Do not use a metal container", but none of them say why. So, I investigated, and found yet another slew of sourdough recipes that said "Do not use a metal container because it will give a metallic taste to the bread." They still didn't say why....

Phaedrus, however, does not gve up easily.

More research into the matter revealed that bread starters are acidic, and acid tends to leach metal ions (electrically charged particles of metal) out of the surface of a metal that it contacts, particularly such metals as aluminum and copper and iron. It also happens with stainless steel, but to a much lesser degree. Stainless steel does not give up its ions as easily as the other metals. It's these tiny particles of metal that leach into the starter that give the bread baked from it an off-taste. The starter recipes recommend glass or crockery containers, because these do not produce ions like a metal container does. You should never store acidic foods in metal containers for the same reason. Not only will the metalions leach off into the food and give it an off-taste, but the acid will also react with the metal surface of the container and will discolor it after a length of time.

That said, short term use of stainless steel spoons and bowls will not affect a starter much, since it takes a longer time for stainless steel to react with the acid.


Using Molasses for Sugar

> Date:          Fri, 19 Sep 1997 08:37:21 -0500
> From:          Jerry 
> To:            phaedrus
> Subject:       Baking Question

> When making cookies or cookie bars, my wife and I like to decrease 
>the amount of  brown sugar in the recipe so they aren't as sweet. 
> But when > we do, it also decreases the moistness and/or makes them 
> not hold  together as well.  What can we substitute for part of the 
> brown sugar to make up for this problem?  Please return a message to:
> jerry

Dear Jerry,

Try substituting molasses for 1/2 of the brown sugar. Substitute directly (example: 1/2 cup molasses for 1/2 cup of sugar), and add 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda for each 1/2 cup of molasses to reduce the acidity of the molasses. This should make your cookies not only less sweet, but it should make them moister and hold together well.

You can also use honey this way, but honey is sweeter than sugar, so substitute only 1/3 cup honey for 1/2 cup sugar. Use 1/8 teaspoon of baking soda per 1/3 cup of honey.

*NOTE: Always reduce oven temperature by 25 when using honey or molasses.


Pickled Walnuts

> From:          "Dave Peck" 
> To:            phaedrus
> Subject:       Pickled Walnuts
> Date:          Thu, 11 Sep 1997 09:04:08 -0700

> Greetings and salutations,
> I am trying to find a recipe for pickled walnuts.
> I tasted them a couple of years ago and LOVE them.
> I now have access to a walnut tree but am unable to find a recipe.
> My taste buds need you!
> Thanks
> Peccavi Pickler

Dear Dave,

Try this:

Pickled Walnuts

2 1/4 lb / 1kg young green walnuts
1/4 lb / 350g salt
3 1/2 pints / 2 litres water
1 oz / 25g black peppercorns
1tsp allspice
2 1/2 pints / 1.5 litres wine vinegar
1/2 tsp freshly grated dry ginger
2 in. / 5cm stick of cinnamon, crumbled

1. Prick the walnuts all over with a carpet (or other large)needle. Place the nuts in a ceramic bowl, dissolve half the salt in half the water and pour over the walnuts. Cover and leave for 5 days in a cool place, stirring twice a day to ensure even brining.

2. Drain the walnuts, mix the remaining salt and water, pour over the brine and leave for another five days, stirring twice a day as before. Drain, spread out in a single layer on a flat dish and leave to dry in the sun until they are black.

3. Crush the peppercorns and allspice berries and simmer the vinegar with the spices for 20 minutes. Allow to cool and strain. Pack the walnuts into sterilized, wide-necked jars, filling them no more than three-quarters full, and pour in the spiced vinegar. Cover and leave in a cool place for 6 weeks before using.



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