Crescendo: Premium Vinegars & Oils

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I was recently invited for the official launch of Crescendo,one of Germany’s largest retail franchises.They specialize in a wide range of premium quality Vinegar, Oils and a great selection of spices and herbs sourced from all over the globe.

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The afternoon spent at Crescendo was indeed a very informative one. Kaspars Vendelis Crescendo’s in-house Good taste consultant educated us on a variety of uses and benefits of the various Oils and Vinegar in store. The range is fairly unique and can be adapted into various cuisines as well.

The Vinegar range from the Classic to Balsamic Aceto Balsamico and the wonderful Balsamic Crème varieties. We sampled some great varieties such as Raspberry vinegar,Date vinegar and Kalamansi vinegar.It was interesting to learn that the Crème vinegar have a higher percentage of fruit which makes the flavor more powerful. The blueberry vinegar was indeed a winner for me…and any wonder it has been awarded a three star rating by the International Taste and Quality Institute.

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We then went onto sampling a variety of Oils. These were classified as Extra Virgin Olive Oils, Nut Oils,Seed oils ,Infused Oils and wellness oils.A great tip shared by Kaspers was the anti aging oil mix. This is a combination of Argan oil,grape oil and walnut oil.Furthermore wheat germ oil has some great healing properties especially for damaged skin as it has a high content of vitamin E.

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Crescendo stocks a great range of International spices as well. They are quite a unique  blend and have over 90 different varieties to choose from.

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The session ended with a live cooking demo by Kaspers. Just as well as after having sampled an array of vinegar and Oils it was interesting to see how these could be used in cooking as well.

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A recipe for Chicken Liver with Raspberries:

  • Chicken Liver
  • Raspberries
  • Quail eggs
  • Mixed salad leaves
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Sesame seeds
  • Hazelnut Oil
  • Raspberry Balsamic vinegar

Directions:

  1. Boil quail eggs and put aside.
  2. Clean and cut the chicken liver into bite size pieces.
  3. Put the liver in a bowl and marinate with raspberry vinegar for 20 minutes,pat dry and roast on a hot pan.
  4. On plates assemble mixed salad leaves with cucumbers and tomatoes with raspberry vinegar and hazelnut oil.
  5. Arrange the chicken liver over the salad leaves and top with the quail eggs.

Great ways to use Oils and Vinegar in your everyday cooking.

What more their bottles come beautifully packaged in elegant bottles and would certainly make great gifts. Do visit them soon.

Crescendo is located in the Souk Madinat Jumeirah on the main level next to Patchi.

Pizza making at Pantry Cafe

Pantry Café a wonderful modern dining & open kitchen  concept opened it’s door’s a couple of months ago. Having read Foodiva’s review I had explored this place over breakfast and a brunch a couple of times. This café has a lovely rustic-chic feel to it. The menu apart from the wide  array of sandwiches, soups ,salads has  the most delightful cheese platters and some great steaks too.. And of course their wood oven Pizzas.

I had read all about its live Pizzeria and the wonderful wood oven Pizza’s though had yet to try some. It was marked down on my “To Eat” list for my next trip to Pantry Café.

Well I was quite naturally excited on getting a blogger’s invite for a Pizza making demo and decided to go along and see this happen live.

On arriving we were warmly greeted by the lovely Owner who was very enthusiastic about the afternoon session. She then introduced us to the man behind stove or in this case the wood oven –Chef Dominico from Naples.

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The demo started off with the chef explaining to us about the key steps in the Pizza making process. In this case it’s the Italian Tipo 00 Pizza flour that creates their wonderful thin crust pizza’s. This is available at the pantry café for those of you who may wish to experiment with some pizza making in your kitchens. The café also retails various other products ranging from Oils,vinegar,pasta sauces & cheeses.

Sauces

 

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We sampled four varieties of Pizza’s that afternoon.
 Classic Margherita
Spicy Diavalo with Wagyu Pepperoni, Mushrooms & cherry tomatoes
Genovese with a pesto base and topped with Mushrooms & Arugula
Pizza Bianca

As for me the Pizza Bianca was a winner…Truffle Brie, Mushrooms, Roasted garlic & Arugula…Absolutely divine!

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Thank you Pantry café for a wonderful afternoon.

Do visit Pantry café:
 Located at: Al Wasl Square Al Hadeeqa Street Jumeirah
Contact: Tele: 009714-3883868
E-mail: info@pantrycafe.ae
Open for Breakfast,Lunch & Dinner

Pizza Recipes as shared by Chef Dominico Pantry café.

Classic Pizza Margherita

The traditional Margherita pizza is a simple pizza that relies on the basic ingredients to make a great pizza-Italian Tippo Flour, San Marzano Tomatoes, fresh Mozzarella,olive oil,and fresh Basil .There are three official variants. Pizza Marinara which is made with tomatoes,garlic,oregano,and extra virgin oil. Pizza Margeherita,made from tomatoes, sliced mozzarella, basil, and extra virgin olive oil and Pizza Bianca, a white base with fresh mozzarella ,garlic, oregano,sea salt and extra virgin olive oil.

Pizza Dough Recipe

1kg Caputo Tipo 00 Flour

1/2 liter of water

1 tablespoon salt

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon sunflower oil

1 teaspoon brown sugar

1/2 tablespoon fresh yeast

Pour water into a mixing bowl. Add Oil, salt, sugar and yeast and mix well. Then slowly keep adding the flour until all the water has been absorbed and continue to mix all the ingredients for the dough by hand and knead well for about 10 minutes. when done,divide the dough into smaller balls and cover with a wet muslin cloth and let it rest for 12 hours.

Pizza Sauce Recipe

500 grams San Marzano tomato sauce

1 1/2 tablespoon salt

3 tablespoons oil

1 teaspoon white sugar

50 gr. fresh basil

You can use canned San Marzano tomatoes to create a wonderful and simple pizza tomato sauce. Mix all the ingredients for the sauce together and blend using a hand mixer.If you are using a brick oven, you should not cook the sauce. The hot oven will cook the sauce perfectly. If you are using a convectional oven you can cook the sauce for 3 minutes.

Basic Pizza Margherita

3 tablespoons tomato sauce

5 grams Parmiggiano Reggiano

40 grams fresh mozzarella

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

5-6 whole basil leaves for garnish

Preheat the oven to 240 Knock back the dough balls by punching it to remove air and roll each dough out on a floured surface until you have very thin, 25cms-diameter pizza bases.

Spread the tomato sauce over pizza bases leaving a 2cm border. Divide the mozzarella between the bases, then scatter the Parmiggiano  Reggiano .Drizzle with olive oil and bake for 8-10 minutes until the cheese has melted and the pizza bases are crisp and lightly golden around the edges..

Drizzle the pizzas with a little more olive oil, garnish with small basil leaves then serve immediately.

This is just the start .Once you master a perfect pizza margherita, you can vary it by adding an endless possibilities of ingredients. Below is a simple guide to assist you in selecting the right ingredients for the different pizza variants however,remember there are no hard and fast rules.

Margherita & Marinara

Porcini mushrooms

Grilled eggplant, tomato and basil

Grille eggplant, tomato, arugula, capers and anchovies

Arugula and grilled onions

Al Mare- clams, mussels and prawns

Four seasons: artichokes, mushrooms, olive and turkey ham

Turkey ham, Wagyu pepperoni, Wagyu ground beef, button mushrooms & cherry tomatoes.

Bianca

Roast potato, rosemary and Percorino

Mushroom, leek, tomato and slivered Parmesan

Pesto, oil and tomato

Smoked salmon and Brie

Mushroom and Brie

Artichoke and Brie

Four cheese: mozzarella, Percorino, parmesan and Gorgonzola

Olive,grilled onions and anchovies

Truffle Brie, mushrooms, roasted garlic, arugula

You may also like to read a fellow bloggers review of Pantry café Pizza making at :

www.coffeecakesandrunning.net

www.mymouthisfull

DISCLAIMER: I was invited to Pantry café for the Pizza making session and all views expressed on this blog post are solely my own.