Before I get started with Italian desserts, I'd like to thank those people from Latvia that have started following my food blog. Over the past few weeks I've had just shy of 200 hits from the people of Latvia. During that time only my USA and Russian followers were higher in numbers.
I am truly thankful to all of you that follow my blog. I hope in some small way that I help you in the kitchen and to enjoy the time you spend preparing and cooking for yourselves and others. Please share this site with all your family and friends.
Please let me know what recipe or recipes on my blog you like the best. Also, if there is some question or topic you would like me to cover, just let me know. Thank you again for your support.
Italians love their desserts just as much as they love their pasta. They don't seem to do as much with cakes and pies as most Americans do. But they do a lot of other items that if you haven't tried before you should.
The Italians make all sorts of cookies but seem to really like the use of almonds or almond paste in many of these recipes. It gives a distinct taste to whatever recipe you use them in and you'll get hooked on the flavor. One of the recipes this week is for a cookie called "Amaretti" that doesn't even use flour.
My favorite Italian store is Tenuta's Deli & Grocery in Kenosha, Wisconsin. They sell a cookie there that is called an "Italian Wedding Cookie" and it's unbelievable. It is the three colors of the Italian flag (green, red & white) and worth ordering online. They don't list it as an item they ship but call the number on their site and ask them about getting those cookies.
Now these "Wedding Cookies" are very different from the ones often referred to as Italian Wedding Cookies, Mexican Wedding Cookies or Russian Tea Cookies. Most the time you will get the same cookie under all three of these names. Those are round balls that have been rolled in powdered sugar. This cookie in Kenosha, WI is very different and in my opinion tastes and satisfies much better.
Italians use ricotta and marscarpone cheese in desserts as Americans use creamed cheese. This gives a dessert item a slightly different taste that is quite enjoyable. They both work well in making cheesecake.
The second recipe this week is for "Italian Apple Cake" made in a spring-form pan. It is a great dish for anytime of the year but when apple season comes in, it's the best. In the recipe I tell you to serve it warm with whipped cream. In a recipe note I mention that I prefer it warm with a good vanilla ice cream.
Speaking of ice cream, the Italians make "Gelato" which is a little different. Gelato uses more whole milk and less cream than ice cream and doesn't add as much air to the product too. If you have never tried - you need to find some soon.
Enjoy this week's recipes and "Happy Cooking" to everyone.