soberandhungry's Blog

we love wine, we love food and we love sharing

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Keeping Traditions Alive: Making Cavatelli Pasta with Nonna

One of the best things about being in the S&H team is that two of our members are proper Italians, with proper Italian parents, in a proper Italian village with an amazing Italian Nonna who has been making pasta from scratch all her life! I have been lucky enough to sit with Nonna Olimpia and learn the art of making Cavatelli Pasta and fair play to Nonna; this pasta is labor intensive and time consuming work… here is how it is done…

How to Make Cavatelli

  1. Take your ball of dough and divide it into quarters
  2. Lay the dough out on a lightly floured wooden surface and divide again
  3. Take a piece of the dough and roll it into a long and thin tube
  4. Divide the tube into pieces 1 inch long with a knife…and now – here is the fun part!
  5. Firmly press your three middle fingers onto the piece and pull back. You find that the motion causes the dough to curl up into hollow shape with wobbly edges from your little finger tips!
  6. After rolling each Cavatelli toss onto a lightly floured tray and begin again!

Don’t be put off if the first few don’t work – experiment with different amounts of pressure and keep at it!

The S&H Team want to make sure that these old traditions like making Cavatelli do not become a memory of the past. So go on – give it a go!

 Cavatelli Ingredients

  • 1 Cup Warm water
  • 1 Pinch of Salt
  • 4 Cups of 00 type Flour


  1. Pour the cups of the flour into a bowl and make a well in the middle.
  2. Using a circular motion, slowly incorporate the flour into the water. Add a pinch of salt.
  3. Knead the dough together until a soft, but not sticky dough is formed.  It can depend on the day, but if the dough still remains sticky add more flour.

Cooking from fresh

They only take a few minutes to cook in a pot of salted water on a rapid boil and once your little beauts are ready they float to the top!


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The Menu for Our Dream Restaurant


“I want to start a restaurant that includes comfort food, technical food, fun and sharing food, fancy wanky food, weird food…our customers are knowledgable and hungry, we need to feed them…!” – James

Grilled sardines
Scallops with black pudding
Roasted bone marrow
Tuna carpaccio
Horse/beef steak tartare
Stuffed squid
Something with a bloody vegetable in it! – soup I reckon

Gnocchi con formaggio
Papardelle con broccoli
Ravioli con ricotta (pork belly sauce)
Pheasant con tagliatelle (Maybe this should be a main)

Stuffed Pigs trotter – you just wait!
Fish in salt basket
Pork belly
Beef Wellington
Mini bird in a bird in a bird (for 2) – (Quail, wood pigeon, poussin)
Again something vegetable!!!
Seabream in crazy water (Traslation from Italian)

Things to try and share
Pigs eye!
Breaded kidneys
Bruschetta con gamberetti

Comments folks?…

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A really Chocolatey Malteasers cake

This is simply the easiest, tastiest chocolate cake ever! It is a BBC Good Food recipe (copy and pasted below). For the cake below I baked the sponge and rather than the icing; I wrapped the warm cake in baking paper and melted Malteasers into place. I left the middle empty to write my friend’s name – but for a more dramatic look you can cover the whole of the cake in Malteasers.


For the cake
For the chocolate icing

Preparation method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4. Grease and line two 20cm/8in sandwich tins.
  2. For the cake, place all of the cake ingredients, except the boiling water, into a large mixing bowl. Using a wooden spoon, or electric whisk, beat the mixture until smooth and well combined.
  3. Add the boiling water to the mixture, a little at a time, until smooth. (The cake mixture will now be very liquid.)
  4. Divide the cake batter between the sandwich tins and bake in the oven for 25-35 minutes, or until the top is firm to the touch and a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean.
  5. Remove the cakes from the oven and allow to cool completely, still in their tins, before icing.
  6. For the chocolate icing, heat the chocolate and cream in a saucepan over a low heat until the chocolate melts. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk the mixture until smooth, glossy and thickened. Set aside to cool for 1-2 hours, or until thick enough to spread over the cake.
  7. To assemble the cake, run a round-bladed knife around the inside of the cake tins to loosen the cakes. Carefully remove the cakes from the tins.
  8. Spread a little chocolate icing over the top of one of the chocolate cakes, then carefully top with the other cake.
  9. Transfer the cake to a serving plate and ice the cake all over with the chocolate icing, using a palette knife.