This is a highly recommended column that explores what people in the food industry are obsessed with eating, drinking, and buying right now.
Do you remember your first perfume? That brief twilight after Love’s Baby Soft, but before CK One, I owned McCormick’s Vanilla Extract. Sneaked out of the spice cupboard and dabbed it on secretly in front of school, it smelled like a cupcake – just the right amount of charm for me. Although I’ve since traded vanilla for more sophisticated and exotic scents, I still occasionally adorn my pulse points with another staple on my baking shelf: King Arthur’s Fiori di Sicilia extract.
While Fiori di Sicilia is widespread in Italy and called for in traditional recipes for panettone or Colomba d’oro, this potent blend of citrus and vanilla is relatively unknown in the United States, except for King Arthur Baking Store-obsessed. The specific ingredients are a secret, but the extract captures the essence of Sicily in a bottle. There’s an explosion of sweet citrus, bright and fresh with the crack of an orange twisted straight from the branch. In the heart is a musky, luscious vanilla, like a Palermo flower box full of fragrant plumeria. The base note is invigorating and spicy thanks to the piquant pulp of Cedro, a type of lemon that is up to three times the size of a normal fruit and 70% peel, ideal for candied peel and jam. Earl Gray fans will also recognize the refined bitter orange aroma of bergamot.
If you’d rather cook with it than carry it, a few drops of Fiori di Sicilia will make any babka or brioche batter shine. Add it to the batter and glaze of a teacake recipe or play with Sicilian cassata, add some extract to the sponge cake base, layer the flavorful ricotta filling you would use for cannoli, and decorate with jewels candied fruits. Try it in an olive oil cake to bring out the vibrant green flavors.
Because Fiori di Sicilia is a blend of essential oils rather than a distilled extract, it is highly concentrated and best used with caution. King Arthur recommends adding only half a teaspoon to standard recipes. (KA also recommends keeping it in the refrigerator.) However you use it, Fiori di Sicilia is the perfect accessory that is sure to turn heads and compliment strangers – whether in your baked goods or on your wrists.
Source * www.bonappetit.com – * Source link