Archive for August, 2011
Fresh vegetables, herbs and fruits in cocktails?
Exploring Sacramento’s fresh farm ingredient cocktails by pedaling through downtown!
By Bethany Heckman, Local Roots Food Tours Guide
Grange Restaurant & Bar
926 J St - Inside Citizen Hotel
Sacramento, CA 95814
Happy Hour: Monday-Friday 3pm-6pm
The Citizen Hotel is a stunning building with an ominous presence in downtown Sacramento so the fact that there is a beautiful bar/restaurant inside is a bonus. The Grange is a farm to table restaurant, offering fresh and local ingredients for each of their dishes. Walking into the Grange you immediately notice their lovely large bar showcasing liqueurs and bottles of spirits. The bartenders are constantly chopping, cutting, and peeling fresh produce: mint, oranges, cucumbers, lemons and ginger. The Grange is a hot spot in downtown Sacramento and known for their fresh summer cocktails. As often as possible they use fresh ingredients to give customers a true taste of garden cocktails. For example, the “Zarzamora,” Don Q rum, Veev acai liquor, blackberry-vanilla syrup, lime, mint. When I spoke with the bartenders at the Grange they let me in on a little secret of a cocktail they were just creating: so new it didn’t even have a name yet. It begins with a 12 year old Zaya Rum blended with a house made fresh nectarine and mint syrup (similar to a smoothie) to bring out the fresh fruity taste of the nectarine. Then, a little fresh squeeze of lemon juice is added and poured as a sipper cocktail.
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Get Your Freshly Ground Hamburgers Here!
Local Roots Food Tours Guide Bethany Heckman goes Behind the Hamburger Scene
There is nothing more American than a burger and fries. But who wants meat that has been frozen for 6 months and floppy produce to top their hamburger? Not this girl. I took it upon myself to delve into Sacramento’s restaurants and research places that boast using FRESH ground meat and FRESH delicious fixin’s. Bon Appetit!
Nationwide Freezer Meats
1930 H St
Sacramento, CA 95814
Serving fresh ground steak burgers since 1969, Nationwide is a Sacramento staple. Nationwide boasts about their quality of meat used in each hamburger- Harris Ranch steak that is freshly ground to order. Each patty weighs 1/3lb. Tasting the French Ground Steak burger you understand why they take pride in their burgers. The fresh beef flavor shines through right after your first bite. Each patty is cooked to the perfect temperature, making sure it doesn’t dry out on the grill. The fresh baked French roll bun is served on is light and airy and fabulous. The vegetables used to top the burger are fresh and crisp: red onion, tomato, lettuce and crunchy dill pickles. (for a little extra I always add the grilled onions and mushrooms) The special sauce is to die for. I always ask for more because it doesn’t take away from the taste of the fresh meat, it only enhances it. Don’t forget to add a side of their house made fresh steak fries!!
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Local Roots Tour Guide, Bethany Heckman steps behind the Italian deli counter at Sampino’s Towne Foods.
If you’ve ever stepped foot inside Sampino’s you’ll know the physical reaction you have to the place. Instantly, your taste buds awaken, you’re sense of smell ignites and you are quickly ready for one thing: Ready. To. Eat.
Coming from an Italian family myself, I knew that I would instantly fall in love with this place. My grandparents both came from Italy and opened a deli/restaurant similar to this one in Northern California. The minute I tried the food, I was hooked.
If you are seeking fresh, local and mouth-watering food- look no further than Sampino’s. Tucked away next to a Laundromat, fast food Chinese and a bail bonds company, you would never expect this little hidden jewel on the fast paced 16th Street.
Sampino’s is one of our tour stops on our Local Roots Food Tour; City of Trees. Sampino’s has quickly become an instant favorite. Tastings of button and porcini mushroom risotto to the handmade mezzaluna stuffed pastas and cappuccino/pistachio gelato, Sampino’s has a knack for food which is why we chose them to be on our food tour!
Owners father Bill, his son Michael and daughter in law Gabi have turned Sampinos into a tucked away hot spot. But the word has gotten out about this treasure. So much so, Sampino’s is launching their debut dinner menu this Friday night, August 26. The owners of Sampino’s have seen the demand their customers are looking for. Food after 4 pm. Chef Craig Takehara has joined the Sampino team by donating many hours of his time while teaming with the Sampinos in creating a dinner menu that speaks right to one’s palate. Chef Takehara will be joining the Sampino Team if these dinners go as well as anticipated. “We looked around for someone with the same values we cherish. Quality food, fresh ingredients and a devotion to service. That is what this family business is about,” says owner Michael. “There are plenty of chefs in the area but we feel we found the one that will best fit in with us here at Sampino’s.” Chef Takehara has lived primarily in Los Angeles but was trained mostly in Japan. “You may think it’s odd to have a Japanese chef at an authentic Italian restaurant, but you’d be surprised,” says Takehara. “I learned the most about Italian cooking while in Japan. The Japanese are passionate about noodles and rice. Similar to Italian cooking.”
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Bethany Heckman (Local Roots Food Tours Guide) takes us down Happy Hour Lane in Sacramento.
With the temperatures warm, it becomes obvious that Happy Hour in Sacramento is a summer staple. With restaurants offering fun summer cocktails, we’ve outlined 7 Local Hot Spots that are featuring fun and delicious new summertime drinks!!!
1116 15th St.
Sacramento, CA 95814
Monday- Friday 4pm-7pm
Cafeteria 15L features the “Cabo Cooler”: Cazadores Reposado and Apple Pucket, muddles with fresh strawberries and oranges and topped with fresh orange juice. Yum! If you aren’t much of a tequila drinker, try the “Loose Juice”: Hendricks gin, St. Germain, muddles with cucumber and lime, topped with soda water. It’s to die for. Cafeteria 15L also offers yummy bites to eat at an amazing price!
Ella Dining Room & Bar
1131 K St.
Sacramento, CA 95814
Monday- Friday 3pm-7pm
Ella not only offers a beautiful area to sip the night away, the drinks are beautiful as well.
“The Georgia Porch” is perfect for summer sipping: Four Roses bourbon, crème de peche, Amaro Ciociaro, lemon, egg whites and a touch of cinnamon. Delicious. Or try the simple peach mojito, white rum, peach puree, mint and lime, keep in mind the house made peach puree is made with the freshest of summer crops!
With blueberries in season, the margarita that Ella offers is a delight. 100% Blue Agave Blanco tequila, Delta blueberries (keepin’ it local!), agave syrup, combier and lime! Cheers to you!
Tapa the World
2115 J Street
Sacramento, CA 95816
Enjoying the outdoor patio Tapa the World offers is amazing. Just add these two cocktails and you have yourself an amazing evening. “The Caipirinha”: Aged Brazilian Cachaca muddled with TONS of fresh cubes of lemons and lime. After trying a Caipirinha, move on to the “Kasbahpolitan”: Level One vodka, fresh (and delicious!) pomegranate juice and cointreau. Ask them to muddle a fresh lemon in the glass before pouring and it adds an extra kick that makes all the difference! Add something off their tapas list and you have an amazing evening all ready to go.
1531 L St.
Sacramento, CA 95814
With names like Passion Punch and Zen-tini you know MIX downtown is a hot spot for Happy Hour patrons. The “Forbidden Fruit” cocktail: Grey Goose La Poire (pear) vodka, Cointreau, muddled fresh strawberries and basil topped with fresh juice and a splash of soda… Is your mouth watering yet? How about “Fire & Ice”: Bacardi Superior, Bacardi Grand Melon, agave nectar, muddled fresh cucumber and jalepeno with fresh lime juice. Just think of what your tongue will do! What a great combination of cool and warm flavors! Stop by today and let your mouth have a summer vacation of its own.
1801 Capitol Ave
Sacramento, CA 95811
Phone: (916) 441-0303
Nothing says summer like margaritas. At Zocalo, margaritas are their speciality. Try the “Corazon Puro”: 100% Blue Agave Blanco, Canton Ginger, fresh pomegranate juice, agave and fresh squeezed lime. Wow! If you’d like a little more fruit, try the “Zocolo Blackberry Margarita”: tequila, fresh blackberries, agave and fresh lime. If you can’t decide from their extremely large menu, Zocalo invites patrons to join them for a monthly Tequila Experience, featuring a different tequila distillery every month and complimentary appetizers. The tequila flight consists of three, 1 ounce pours. The even is held the first Monday of every month starting at 6pm. Interested? Give them a call and book today!
Come tour the capitol area’s best restaurants and specialty food stores with us, along with the chefs, architecture, and history that make Sacramento Tours an exciting culinary destination. We offer authentic tasting and cultural experiences in Sacramento’s intriguing downtown and beautiful urban neighborhoods. Tantalize your tastebuds on a 3-hour guided tour through Sacramento’s historic (and delicious!) tree-lined streets (90% of our tour is in shade with air conditioned stops).
Taste. Learn. Explore. Connect.
Sacramento Food Tasting and Cultural Walking Tours
Culinary Meets Cultural – One ‘Mmmmm’ at a Time
New to the area, or a Sacramento native? Both will enjoy sampling a multitude of mouth-watering dishes prepared specially for you on our Sacramento Tour ($58 – fulfilling lunch) – yes, it is literally quite a mouthful! Suitable for all ages, this tour emphasizes locally-grown, fresh ingredients used by our talented artisans. You’ll go behind the scenes, meet the chefs, and talk to the proprietors, all while getting a glimpse of Sacramento’s rich history. Yes, you’ll walk a bit, but you won’t need jogging shoes – we’re in savor mode here (the technical term is ‘Critical Gastronomical Research’!) Food tours are a fabulous way to sample great food with family, friends, and other foodies! Don’t know if you’re a foodie? No worries, you can focus on snagging that extra sample while our guide explains what ‘extra virgin’ really means (there’s no quiz at the end). Budget-minded? You’ll get the inside story on some of the best food deals in town (those even the locals don’t know about!) as you happily chomp along. A full stomach, and an enlightened mind – what better payoff could there be?
Dog-Gone Good Time at Sacramento Eateries
Blog by Bethany Heckman
We all love our dogs and hate to leave them at home alone while we are out eating and having a good time. Many Sacramento restaurants are now accommodating dogs on their outdoor patios! Bring along your pooch to your next lunch date or dinner, and an even better idea: walk there! You’ll get the workout and they will love you for it!
1030 K St
Sacramento, CA 95814
Ambrosia, meaning, “food of the gods,” is always sure to please. Located conveniently on pedestrian K Street this lovely café boasts out of this world desserts, but also serves a delicious light lunch (with screamin’ delicious paninis!) Their Slow Roasted Eggplant sandwich is absolutely delicious: eggplant, thick hunks of feta cheese, hummus and roasted tomatoes served on grilled herb focaccia bread. Yum. Your dog will be begging to have you drop a bite for him to try. Pair one of their delicious sandwiches with their yummy locally made chai tea and possibly (read: most likely) a dessert. I recommend anything in their dessert case, but if you have to narrow it down, try a blackout cupcake. Chocolate cake with chocolate frosting. You can’t beat it. Ambrosia has recently opened for a late night dessert menu service, Thursday- Saturday from 7pm- midnight. All I can say is, “Do it!” Your belly with thank you and your dog will love lying at your feet and enjoy people watching on K Street!
5038 Fair Oaks Blvd
Carmichael, CA 95608
Just up the street from the American River access point, Bella Bru is a hidden gem. With their lovely outdoor patio seating, Bella Bru encourages you to bring your dog along and relax under their large umbrellas and enjoy the sunshine. While here, try one of their Grilled Flatbreads, my favorite, the Roasted chicken: chicken, wild mushrooms, olives, grilled onions, goat cheese all atop a delicious marinara sauce. Or I recommend trying the Polpettini: handmade meatballs, Tuscan white beans, tomato paste and parmesan cheese. Perfect. Bru serves a beautiful dinner menu that showcases their Mediterranean menu with lovely pastas, salads and pizzas. Bella Bru loves dogs so much, the offer a communal water bowl for your little furry friends. Not only will your dogs mouth be watering over the aromas coming from the kitchen, your mouth will be watering as well.
1409 R St, Ste 102
Sacramento, CA 95811
Magpie is a hidden gem here in Sacramento. Located on R Street, wedged between Shady Lady Saloon and R15, Magpie’s small outdoor patio is perfect for any lunch with your canine friend. Magpie serves a beautiful breakfast, lunch and dinner menu. My favorite: Lunch. Try the Smoked Trout Sandwich. Not one for the “too fishy” taste, this trout is smoked perfectly. The Del Rio heirloom cherry tomatoes, cilantro, roasted pepper cream cheese are a solid addition to the sandwich and Magpie executes this dish magnificently. I always add their black rice dish for $2 extra and it’s so worth it. Magpie offers a happy hour Monday-Friday from 3pm-6pm that boasts $4 bites, $wines and $3 beers. Can’t beat those prices. Your dog will be on it’s best behavior just for a nibble of your dish.
1730 L St
Sacramento, CA 95814
Are you ever walking the streets of Sacramento, trying to be a good dog owner and a place catches your eye? Crepeville was this place for me. I pass it each day walking my furry baby and had always wanted to try it. Seeing their large outdoor area, I figured they wouldn’t mind my pup joining my dining experience. I was right. Feeling like having a sweet (this feeling comes over me several times a day) I tried the Honey-Lemon Blintz: Ricotta cheese mixed with honey and lemon topped with apple sauce and sour cream. OMG. Delicious. The next day I walked by yet again and figured I would try another delicacy. This time I tried a savory crepe, the Hawaiian: cheddar cheese, pineapple, ham, onions, soy sauce and brown sugar. OMGGGGG. Amazing. The wonderful thing about Crepeville is their “design your own crepe” menu offering over 20 items to choose from. Because of Crepeville, I now look forward to going on my daily walk with my pup.
Streets of London Pub
1804 J St
Sacramento, CA 95814
I have to say that there is nothing better than pub food. With its comfort qualities, Streets of London showcases great, warm, tasty and fabulous dishes. I have been to the real streets of London several times and I have to say their fish and chips are quite comparable. I have tried to order many different dishes each time I stop here, but the fish and chips always call me back. They are battered and fried perfectly golden brown and they always have the perfect amount of malt vinegar for me to add. My husband (and of course dog, Lily) and I go to Streets quite often and we love the outdoor seating and perfect place on J Street to people watch. My husband has ordered Bangers and Mash (and after begging I always get a bite or two) and said that it is absolutely delicious. We always make sure to get the bell pepper and sausage soup as well. A REAL tribute to an English dining experience!
Purple carrots, white strawberries and cucamelons?
No, I’m not going crazy, I’m talking about heirloom produce. I’m sure that you’ve heard of heirloom tomatoes, but what does the ‘heirloom’ prefix mean? An heirloom plant or vegetable is a crop that was commonly grown during earlier periods in history, but is not used in “modern large scale agriculture.”
More and more Farmer’s Markets are offering Heirloom produce. The heirloom seed market is growing rapidly as well. Many website offer a large variety of seeds for you to “grow your own” heirloom produce. Everything from black corn, chocolate colored sweet peppers and Merlot lettuce. (yes it’s deep wine colored!) One specific heirloom variety watermelon is a cucamelon. It is a light green fruit whose flesh is white, crisp and crunchy with a lemony tartness. The flavor is similar to a cucumber. People chop them up into summer salads or add them to a simple salsa. I personally eat them like pretzels or chips! Just add a tiny salt and pop them in your mouth! Delicious.
Food should be fun, interesting and enjoyable. Adding color, shapes and new varieties of produce is a simple, easy and great way to develop your palate and knowledge of food! Why bother with heirloom vegetables? Well, first of all, they’re something different. Who expects a blue pumpkin or a yellow tomato? Second, the taste. You might be surprised by how much more flavorful an heirloom vegetable is when compared to one of its modern equivalents. Third, most respond very well to organic treatment. This isn’t surprising, since most were developed long before chemical agriculture became the norm! Fourth, it maintains biodiversity. You never know when we’ll need those genes carried by heirloom produce.
Some heirloom veggies may seem quite odd by modern standards. We get so wrapped up in our expectations of what a certain type of vegetable should look like that we tend to forget that it took a while to breed our modern food plants to the standards that we now enjoy. For example, did you know that some heirloom cultivars of pumpkins are red, white, and even blue, rather than the standard orange? Similarly, carrots can be red, white, or black, and round instead of cylindrical. While a few unusual versions of both vegetables have made it into the modern seed catalog, they’re rare.
What about a simple, delicious and easy heirloom carrot recipe?
***Try and find some different sizes, color and shapes of the carrots for extra flair!
3 tbsp butter, melted
2 bunches heirloom carrots, scrubbed
2 shallots, thinly sliced
1 large sprig fresh thyme, leaves only
salt and pepper to season
2 tbsp honey
1. Preheat oven to 400º. In a medium roasting pan, toss the carrots with butter, shallots, and thyme and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
2. Place pan in oven and toast, stirring occasionally, for about 15 minutes, or until carrots are tender.
3. Remove from oven and drizzle over honey. Toss to coat. Season with additional salt and pepper, if necessary.
Want to eat healthy and look like a professional chef while serving “heirloom” produce?! Try:
Heirloom Tomato and Eggplant Gratin
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 pounds tomatoes, sliced 1/2 inch thick
1 pound baby Italian eggplants, peeled and sliced into rounds 1/4 to 1/3 inch thick
4 thyme sprigs
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1/4 pound goat cheese, coarsely crumbled (1 cup)
1. Preheat the oven to 425°. Brush a large oval baking dish with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Arrange the tomato and eggplant slices in a single layer of overlapping concentric circles. Scatter the thyme sprigs on top and season with salt and pepper. Drizzle the remaining 3 tablespoons of olive oil over the top. Cover with foil and bake for about 30 minutes, or until the eggplant is barely tender and the tomatoes have exuded their juices.
2. Uncover the gratin and bake for about 25 minutes longer, or until the juices have evaporated and the vegetables are very tender. Sprinkle the goat cheese on top and bake for about 10 minutes, or until lightly browned. Serve warm or at room temperature.
I suggest your next trip to the Farmer’s Market you should ask the vendors if they have any delicious recipes or “new’ heirloom produce for you to try!
We are in peak season for summer squash and juicy tomatoes. Chefs are putting their skills to the test and coming up with some very delicious, healthy and creative dishes using these two key farm fresh ingredients. This Provençal summer dish is delightful as a starter or as a side dish with fish, chicken or cooked grains.
FRIED SUMMER SQUASH WITH TOMATOES and BASIL
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 pounds medium or small zucchini or other summer squash, thinly sliced or diced (depending on what shape squash you use)
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound ripe tomatoes, grated on the large holes of a box grater, or peeled, seeded and diced
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 to 2 tablespoons chopped or slivered fresh basil (to taste)
1. Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil over medium-high heat in a wide, heavy skillet. Add the zucchini. Cook, stirring or shaking the pan, until the zucchini is lightly seared and beginning to soften, three to five minutes. Remove from the pan, and set aside.
2. Add the remaining olive oil to the pan, then the garlic. Cook, stirring, just until fragrant — less than 30 seconds. Stir in the tomatoes. Cook, stirring, until the tomatoes have begun to cook down, about five minutes. Return the zucchini to the pan, add salt and pepper to taste, and reduce the heat to medium. Cook, stirring often, until the zucchini is tender and translucent and the tomatoes have cooked down to a fragrant sauce. Stir in the basil, and taste and adjust seasonings. Remove from the heat and serve hot, or allow to cool and serve at room temperature.
Yield: Serves four to six.
Advance preparation: You can make this a day or two ahead of time. Keep refrigerated, and reheat gently on top of the stove. The dish is also good cold, doused with a little lemon juice.
Nutritional information per serving (four servings): 111 calories; 1 gram saturated fat; 1 gram polyunsaturated fat; 5 grams monounsaturated fat; 0 milligrams cholesterol; 10 grams carbohydrates; 3 grams dietary fiber; 20 milligrams sodium (does not include salt to taste), 3 grams protein
Nutritional information per serving (six servings): 74 calories; 1 gram saturated fat; 1 gram polyunsaturated fat; 3 grams monounsaturated fat; 0 milligrams cholesterol; 7 grams carbohydrates; 2 grams dietary fiber; 13 milligrams sodium (does not include salt to taste), 2 grams protein
Be a part of National Can-It-Forward Day on August 13
On August 13, join millions of food lovers curious about canning to learn the ease of preserving fresh food as part of National Can-It-Forward Day.
Jarden Home Brands has teamed up with Canning Across America, a nationwide group of food writers, bloggers and cookbook authors united by a passion for canning, to create the National Can-It-Forward Day.
Gather your family and friends to celebrate the bounty of summer through home canning. Learn the ease of preserving fresh food through a day of home canning parties, online instructional canning videos and cooking demos, local events and more. We’ll help you every step of the way.
1. Host a Home Canning Party
Whether you are new to canning or a seasoned pro, canning is always more fun when shared with friends. So get a group and host your very own Can-It-Forward Day Home Canning Party. We’ll make it easy.
Let’s Get the Party Started!
Celebrate National Can-It-Forward Day by hosting your own home canning party. It’s easy and here are all the steps you need to get started:
Step 1: Mark your calendars for August 13 and pick a location to host your very own National Can-It-Forward Day Home Canning Party. Simply select any spot with a working stovetop and some counter space — your kitchen, community center, office break-room, etc.
Step 2: Spread the word – Invite Your Friends, Family, Neighbors and Co-workers for August 13, National Can-It-Forward Day! Twitter #canitforward
Step 3: Select Your Recipes. For National Can-It-Forward Day, we suggest Fiesta Salsa – it’s fun and easy and who doesn’t enjoy salsa made with fresh tomatoes?
Step 4: Decide how many jars of Fiesta Salsa you will be making at your party, just a few or a large batch.
Step 5: Download the printable Intro to Canning Guide, Party Tips Guide, National Can-It-Forward Day Regular Mouth Lid Labels, National Can-It-Forward Day Wide Mouth Lid Labels, and Party Games for hosting your own Can-It-Forward Day party.
Lid Label Directions: The National Can-It-Forward Day labels for the regular mouth jar lids are designed to fit AVERY 5293 Labels. The labels for the wide mouth lids are designed to fit AVERY 5294 labels. Simply download the PDF of your choice, insert the appropriate label sheet into your printer, push print and apply to your jars. Then show your friends and family what you created and listen to their oohs and aahs!
Step 6: Host your own home canning party and receive valuable coupons.
2. Can-It-Forward Day Web TV
Set your calendars and join us here for a full day of LIVE streaming coverage of National Can-It-Forward Day events taking place at Seattle’s Pike Place Market.
From 11 AM — 7 PM EDT/8 AM — 4 PM PDT, we will be airing live canning demonstrations by the experts at Jarden Home Brands, makers of Ball® Home Canning Products and Canning Across America as well as recipe demos from top Seattle chefs. View demonstrations from the comfort of your own home or during a Can-It-Forward Day Home Canning Party! Ask our experts and chefs questions in our live Q&A.
Click here for the National Can-It-Forward Day Web TV broadcast schedule.
Click here for LIVE streaming video on August 13.
3. Participate in Person
Hey Seattle — let’s get canning! If you live in or are in the Seattle area on August 13, stop by Pike Place Market and participate in person! We’ll be celebrating with live canning demonstrations throughout the day, giveaways and sampling and more!
Here are some other recipes we will be celebrating on National Can-It-Forward Day.
Check them out for easy directions:
Now that’s Scamorza!
Scamorza is a cow’s milk spun cheese, belonging to the same family as mozzarella and provolone. It is similar to provolone in its pear-shaped, although it does come in smaller forms. This unique shape is achieved by tying the forms together to hang during the ripening process. In fact, the name of this cheese has somewhat morbid overtones: “scamozza” is an expression in southern Italy which means “beheaded”, it is meant here to describe the cheese’s appearance (tied in a rope bag). Scamorza is from the Campania region around Naples. It is also produced in Abruzzo and Molise. In Puglia, scamorza is made from sheep-milk. Scamorza is similar to mozzarella, but scamorza cheese is a bit firmer and it has more flavor so it is getting a lot of attention worldwide.
Scamorza is made by stretching and molding curd that has been ripened for about 24 hours. The future cheese is then cooled in cold water and put in a brine bath for a period that varies according to the weight of the individual cheese. The end result is drier than Mozzarella, but is equally as smooth and shiny in texture.
Scamorza is generally eaten fresh or smoked, with the latter (Scamorzi Affumicate), having a lovely gold outer layer which makes an excellent table cheese that is also great when used in cooking. All forms are best eaten no more than 3 days after production.
Scamorze allo spiedo is a very old dish in which small scamorza cheeses are threaded on spits which revolve over a wood fire. During the cooking process, the cheese takes on an amber color and the interior becomes creamy and buttery.
This is a wonderful starter. It is incredibly easy to prepare and the WOW-factor is guaranteed!
There’s plain and smoked scamorza cheese and both have a nice texture that only gets better when melted. If you’re planning to grill your cheese using a real grill you can use plain scamorza. If you’re using an electric grill or a pan, go for the smoked one.
2 pieces of smoked scamorza cheese (8 oz each)
About 4 or 6 slices of prosciutto crudo
Cut the cheese in half, lengthwise. If you’re using your panini grill to make this dish, you can spray the grill with a little oil and then turn the grill on. When the grill is ready, set the cheese halves cut-side up. Put some prosciutto on top of each half. Grill for about 1 or 2 minutes, then open the panini grill and continue grilling until a nice crust forms on the bottom side (about 5 minutes). Serve with a drizzle of olive oil and toasted ciabatta bread.