My Mint Syrup

P1370816P1370809My Mint Syrup

I have prepared this homemade Mint Syrup “Sciroppo alla Menta” from the three Mint plants that I cultivate in my little garden. I must say that this Mint syrup taste better and different from the the Mint syrup that I used to buy from the grocery store. Thanks to the special “gardener” who made this delicious experiment possible…

for 1 liter of Mint syrup I used this recipe:

75 grams of 3 types of Mint plants
750 grams of sugar
750 ml water

choose the best leaves + 400 grams of sugar + put 100 ml of water into a blender. Blend for 10 minutes.
Put remaining water and sugar into a pot + mint leaves mixture. Bring to a boil for 20 minutes. Let cool for 4 hours or let cool for 24 hours. Drain and put syrup into a sterilized glass container. Put syrup in the fridge. Oh! for 1 glass of mint drink, I used 2 tablespoons of this homemade syrup.

*When preparing syrups from herbs, you must always consider the possibility of being allergic to certain plants!

“Prosecco Hills”, Col San Martino, Farra di Soligo, Province of Treviso, Italy

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P1370422Prosecco Hills, Col San Martino, Farra di Soligo, Province of Treviso, Italy

I never imagined how wonderful it is to walk in the midst of grapevines which produces the famous Prosecco DOCG. Thank you very much to Sara M. for inviting me and friends to visit the winery owned by her sister in-law and for showing us the natural beauty of the hills cultivated with grapes intended for the production of very special Prosecco wines, DOCG(Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita).

Pan de coco

This is a very well known Filipino delicacy. I think anyone who had the chance to stay in the Philippines surely had the chance to taste this bread buns with coconut filling. It’s probably because I have more time now to dedicate to my favorite hobby which is cooking or baking sweets, after 28 interesting years living outside of my hometown, i finally have these moments where I could try to reconstruct the procedure of how to make some of my favorite Filipino native delicacies. It’s a heartwarming and interesting mental excercise to try to recall past moments and dishes shared with family and friends. Some memories would make me laugh, some would bring tears to my eyes because I just can’t help missing certain special persons in my life, what I surely realize is that….For every moment and for every person that I’ve met, I have learned something….I also know that I’ll always try to make each experience be a lesson to do better and to love more.

PAN DE COCO

I used my Pan de sal recipe for the dough. For 9 coconut filled buns I used the extra Pan de sal dough, which was left after I made some Pan de sal for today and tomorrow’s lunch. I think excess dough was more or less 300 grams.

Filling:

2 cups dessicated coconut
1 1/2 cup brown sugar “Mascobado”
75 grams of butter
1/2 cup milk
2 ml vanilla extract or 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon powder, though I prefer without flavoring.

Cook above ingredients over medium fire, continously stirring for 25 minutes. Avoid burning the coconut filling! Cool.

Use 1 full Tablespoon of this filling for each of the 9 portions of dough. See attached picture.

Preheat oven at 180°C/10 minutes

Gather the end of each disc, close well and turn the bun.
Spread some egg wash on top and on the sides of the bun and do a star like cut on the center. If you like, you can sprinkle some cinnamon powder on top before baking.

Bake at 180°C/25 – 30 minutes

Happy baking!!!

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Mint Tea or Tè alla menta

I’ve always been interested with cultivating herbal plants in my garden and this year I am particularly interested with planting Mentha and Lemongrass. I have 4 varietes of Mint plants and experimenting on how to grow Lemongrass here in the province of Treviso. For the mint plants I was able to buy them from the local plant nursery. Today , I thought of preparing some Mint Tea using some stalks from my Mint plant. I have read about the different health benefits this tea brings, all I can say is…it is truly a very refreshing drink. Oh! I also thought that nature has so many things to offer. We often go to buy Mint teabags from the grocery store without thinking that maybe we could try to cultivate this plant at home.

MINT TEA OR TE’ ALLA MENTA

5 stalks of Mint
4 cups of boiling water
Sugar or honey according to taste. I prefer mint tea without sugar
5 – 6 drops of lemon. By adding lemon, you will obtain a light colored tea and for some, a better tasting mint tea. I prefer mint tea without sugar and without lemon.

Wash the freshly harvested mint stalks, wash them, dry them with a kitchen paper, put them in a teapot, pour the boiling water, leave in infusion for 5 minutes, drain and serve. If you like, you can put the tea in the fridge(once cold!), and use this refreshing drink the next day…

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