Apple strudel bites - Bocconcini di strudel di mele - Mini štrudle od jabuka

Last day I was driving near to the big wild apple tree that is in full blossom now, offering big white flowers and light pink buds. Its flowers are perfumed and bees and other insects are buzzing around them all day long. Suddenly I’ve remembered that I still have some apples in the fruit basket and it was a right moment to use them before they get too old and dry and before the strawberry season begins…
Some time ago I wrote: I have always in the fridge one roll (even two) of puff pastry … and as my apples were waiting in the fruit basket already for weeks I’ve decided to prepare something very quick, some kind of apple strudel bites! And bite after bite we have finished these sweet and spicy hand pies in a while.


Frittata with artichokes – Frittata con i carciofi - Fritaja s artičokama

When I decided to cook my very first artichokes I was little scared. I didn’t know how to start cleaning these so big and so dangerous vegetables. My first artichokes were the Sardinian artichokes with so sharp thorns that can terrible hurt your fingers! So I spent my first half an hour for cleaning just four artichokes and then I do it again and again and it became so natural to me. Now I need less time to do it, but I’m still very careful when I do it, especially until I cut the thorns from the leaves and the petals.

Here are some advices for the beginners:
When buying artichokes choose the ones with the petals well closed, this is the sign that artichokes are fresh. The stem should be long and wide, so you can use it, because it’s edible too.
To avoid hurting yourself, start with Romanesco artichokes that have no thorns.
Before you start cleaning the artichokes prepare the large bowl with cold water and 2 -3 tablespoons of lemon juice or vinegar. Put cleaned and peeled artichokes into the water to avoid that the vegetable oxidize.
Use gloves if you don’t want to get your hands dyed.
Cut of the stem about 1cm under the globe and peel it with the knife. Put the pieces into the water.
Remove the external petals and peel the globe with the knife until you remove all hard parts of the globe. Cut it into two halves and remove the internal hair and thinly petals, because they can also have some small thorns. If you need entire artichokes, gently open the petals and remove the hair and central petals with the teaspoon. Fresh artichokes should have very short hair or even no hair at all. Put clean artichokes into the water.

It will take more time to clean the artichokes, then to cook them. This is incredible, but it’s true! These big vegetables are so delicate and tender inside!


Pinca – Traditional Croatian Easter “sweet bread” – “Pan dolce” Pasquale dalla tradizione Croata

On the Easter morning we use to have a special breakfast feast with sweet bread, coloured eggs, ham and sping onion. There is a kind of egg-battle before we start to eat. Everyone should choose one egg and hit the egg of another tablemate. The winner is the one that remains with his egg intact. This custom is very interesting to children, but also adults get fully involved in it and there are always a lot of laughter and joy around the table.
The sweet bread go very well together with the ham, but after Easter I also like to eat it for breakfast with a cup of coffee. I find it tasty if lightly toasted and with thin spread of butter on it.

Happy Easter!