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Simple Suppers and Super Snacks with Crosta & Mollica:
I’ve long been a fan of having things in my cupboard so that I can put together a simple supper for friends at short notice without having to go to the shops. I hoard jars of kalamata olives, of artichoke hearts and of sun-dried tomato. I always have tapenade to hand and generally have a selection of cured meats and cheeses with a long shelf life tucked away in the back of the fridge.
It works remarkably well. When one of my long standing food blogging friends showed up and was just a bit too tired from her travels to go out and party, I could throw together something quite delicious. But it was, in part at least, down to having some rather special Italian goodies to review.
I learnt how to make this kind of ‘instant’ meal from my mother. She would hoard goodies brought back from holidays overseas because in those days you couldn’t buy good olives at the supermarket, let alone artichoke hearts. She was a little better organised than me and used to keep frozen french bread, cut up into slices in the freezer. But, while she had a chest freezer that was large enough to hold half a lamb (literally) and the entire product of our large kitchen garden, I have three freezer drawers at the bottom of my fridge. Bread doesn’t make it in there unless it is a lone roll left over from dinner. And, to my mind, this kind of eating needs some kind of bread or biscuit product.
This kind of ‘antipasti’ style of eating is something you’ll find all the time in the Mediterranean and, the Founder of Crosta & Mollica was indeed inspired by time spent working with farmers to source the best fresh produce for supermarkets back home. Having been to Puglia for Masseria Sotto le Stelle, a celebration of Italian farming, I’m not surprised. Farms there serve up a full table of local specialities at lunchtime. It’s a time for sharing, rather than one when anyone has to spend their time in the kitchen. And, the crostini, linguette, and tarallini form an essential part of the table. Of course, we should all be making our own…but…
What’s great about the Crosta & Mollica products is that they stay beautifully fresh for months. And yet, somehow they taste ‘freshly baked’. I’ve been particularly impressed by the crostini. We ate one pack of oregano crostini with our store-cupboard supper, but I’ve been pigging out on the chilli ones as savoury snacks and I’ve also used them as croutons in a tomato soup.
I still have more to try – Crosta & Mollica have sent me some conserves which are hidden in the cupboard, waiting for the right excuse to open them. If they are anything like as good as the savoury biscuits I’ll be more than happy.
You’ll find Crosta & Mollica in Waitrose, Whole Foods and a whole range of other grocery stores – for more information on where you can buy and on the product ranges available, check out the Crosta & Mollica website