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Stroke of Midnight Recipe

Stroke of Midnight Recipe

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  • 1 1/2 Ounce Van Gogh dutch chocolate vodka
  • 3/4 Ounces Kahlua coffee liquer
  • 1/4 Ounce créme de cacao
  • 1 Ounce cold Nespresso coffee


Method: Pour the vodka, Kahlua, créme de cacao, and espresso into a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake well. Strain into a chilled martini glass.

Nutritional Facts


Calories Per Serving120




Folate (food)1µgN/A

Folate equivalent (total)1µg0.2%


Niacin (B3)0.1mg0.5%




Have a question about the nutrition data? Let us know.


Stroke of Midnight Recipe - Recipes

Also Called: Doughnuts

The Lenten season once began with Septuagesima, two weeks before Lent. It now begins at midnight of Shrove Tuesday (Fat Tuesday). So this entire day, before the stroke of midnight, is one of merrymaking, feasting, parades, and carnivals — a last fling before Ash Wednesday ushers in the penitential season of Lent.

Mardi Gras, or Fat Tuesday, gets its name in this fashion: In bygone days, not only meat but fats, milk, eggs, and cheese were prohibited during Lent. Thrifty housewives didn't want good food to go to waste, so they cooked up a storm of rich, luscious dishes, using up all the foods that would be unavailable to them during the coming weeks. Thus Shrove Tuesday's fare was a fine, unforgettable feast.

In Germany, these rich doughnuts, fried in deep fat and called Fastnachts, were favorites for pre-Lent festivities.


Heat milk in medium saucepan just until bubbles form around edge of pan. Add molasses, salt, and butter or margarine, stirring until butter is melted. Remove from heat let cool to lukewarm. Sprinkle yeast over warm water stir until dissolved. Add milk mixture, egg, and 2 cups flour beat until smooth and light — 2 minutes medium speed on electric mixer. With wooden spoon, beat in 2-1/4 cups flour. Dough will be soft. Cover with damp towel. Let rise in warm place (85°) free from drafts, until double in bulk — about 1 hour. Punch down dough. If dough seems too soft to handle, work in additional 1/4 cup flour. Turn out on well floured pastry cloth, rolling over to coat lightly with flour. Knead 10 times to make a smooth dough. Cover with mixing bowl let rest 10 minutes. Divide dough in half. Roll out 1/2 inch thick. Cut with floured 3-inch doughnut cutter. Press remaining dough into ball. Reroll cut. With wide spatula, transfer cut doughnuts to top edge of pastry cloth. Cover with towel let rise until double in bulk — 30 to 40 minutes. Meanwhile, heat vegetable oil (1-1/2 to 2 inches deep) to 375°. Gently drop doughnuts, 3 or 4 at a time, and "holes" into hot oil. As they rise to surface, turn over with slotted spoon. Fry until golden on both sides — about 3 minutes in all. With slotted spoon lift doughnuts from oil drain slightly. Drain well on paper towels. Roll in sugar. Makes about 2 dozen.

Recipe Source: Cook's Blessings, The by Demetria Taylor, Random House, New York, 1965

3 Perfect Recipes to Ring in the New Year

Try cooking Hoppin' John, Kiribath, and Oto to bring joy, comfort, and the promise of a fresh start.

Whether it&aposs eating 12 grapes at the stroke of midnight in Spain or polishing off a marzipan pig in Germany, people around the globe celebrate New Year’s Day with culinary traditions in hopes of bolstering good fortune in the months to come. Here, we asked a few of our favorite food pros to share what they cook to bring joy, comfort, and the promise of a fresh start.

Atlanta-based chef Todd Richards spices up his family’s recipe for Hoppin’ John with harissa, Sydney-based writer Yasmin Sabir shares her secrets for making diamonds of coconut rice topped with Sri Lankan sambal, and cookbook author Zoe Adjonyoh, of London, fries up crispy Ghanaian yam patties topped with perfectly jammy eggs. Start a new tradition by preparing these dishes on January 1, or enjoy them throughout the year to commemorate new beginnings of any kind.

Deconstructed Dumpling Noodle Bowls

Happy Year of the Rat! Food is an integral part of Lunar New Year celebrations, and this recipe marries two of the most auspicious—and delicious—dishes traditionally served in the Chinese culture around the lunar new year.

One food that’s most associated with the Lunar New Year is longevity noodles. Why? The length of the noodle is representative of the longevity and happiness of one’s life, so it’s important to start the new year with long noodles to represent an impending year of joy.

Another important dish is the dumpling, filled to the brim with both meat and veggies. It signifies the exchange between the old and the new, as you’re sending away the past and welcoming the future at the start of the new year. (It’s why they’re often consumed at the stroke of midnight.) The crescent shape also resembles money, so the dumpling means wealth and prosperity in the new year.

What happens when you put them together? A deconstructed dumpling noodle bowl that’s perfect for celebrating the Lunar New Year and for inviting happiness and wealth to your life. We’ve packed this one with plenty of fresh veggies you’d find in dumplings for a healthy yet comforting mashup. Just don’t forget to serve everything in red, which represents good fortune and joy!

Amaro Toddy Recipe

Courtesy of Jeff Josenhans at Garibaldi at InterContinental San Diego


1 part Mirto (Sardinian Amaro like Averna Amaro)
1 part Hot Water
1 tsp honey per every 10oz of cocktail recipe above
Garnish clove-spiked lemon wedge into cocktail


Add all liquid ingredients together. Heat up to desired temperature. Add clove spiked lemon wedges into cocktail or vessel, strain upon pouring into smaller glasses or leave in singular cocktail as a garnish.

Drop the Beet

Courtesy of Breakfast Company


½ oz lime juice
1 oz pineapple juice
¾ oz beet syrup
2 dashes of serrano bitters
Soda water
Lemon twist garnish


Combine lime and pineapple juices, beet syrup and serrano bitters in a shaker. Shake and strain into Collins glass over fresh ice. Top with soda water. Garnish with a lemon twist.

Basil Martini


2 ½ oz French vodka
3-5 fresh basil leaves
1 tsp. sugar
1 ½ oz sweet and sour mix
½ oz fresh lime juice


Start by muddling the basil and sugar in a cocktail glass. Add the remaining ingredients and ice, shake and strain into a martini glass and garnish with a basil leaf.


Courtesy of Boochcraft


1 ½ oz Vodka
½ oz Apple sauce
1/4 oz Lime juice
1/4 oz Pineapple juice
Freshly grated cinnamon – from a cinnamon stick


Shake all ingredients together, double strain over fresh ice and top with 3 oz Apple Lime Jasmine Boochcraft. Garnish with a bundle of sage leaves.

Bubbly Belgian


¾ oz cinnamon syrup
2 oz seasonal Lambic of choice
2 oz sparkling wine


Combine all ingredients in a wine glass, fill with ice and stir. Garnish with same fruit as featured in chosen Lambic.


Courtesy of Bar Manager Faisal Asseri of Cloak & Petal


¾ oz lemon juice (freshly squeezed)
½ oz honey syrup
½ oz ginger juice (fresh)
2 oz Glenfiddich 15 Year
Float of Islay Scotch
Candied Ginger garnish (optional)


Combine lemon juice and ginger juices, honey syrup and Glenfiddich in a shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a rocks glass containing a large ice cube. Add scotch float and garnish.

Pomegranate Vodka Gimlet

Courtesy of Seasons Restaurant

Courtesy Photo


3 oz vodka
3 oz pomegranate juice
½ lime juiced
½ oz simple syrup


Shake and pour over ice. Garnish with a sprig of Rosemary and cranberries or pomegranate arils.

Slam Diego Jam

Courtesy of Bivouac San Diego


1 oz Maker’s Mark Bourbon
1 oz Blueberry Basil Syrup
Bivouac San Diego Jam Blackberry Cider


Shake bourbon, simple syrup & lemon juice, pour over ice, top with cider and garnish with lemon peel & mint.

6 New Year’s Food Traditions from Around the World

You probably strongly associate New Year’s Eve with Champagne (for good reason), but that’s not the only food-centric tradition that exists to ring in the coming year. Many cultures have food customs designed to bring in luck, health, and happiness before and after the clock strikes midnight. Here are a few lucky new year’s foods that you may not have heard of. Why not try one of them this year as you welcome 2020?


Eating 12 grapes at midnight (one to symbolize each month of the coming year) is a tradition that originated in Spain in the late 19th century and is still practiced today. Chowing down on a grape with a wish for each coming month is said to set you up for a year of good luck. The jury is still out on whether drinking grapes (in the form of vino) has the same effect, though, so it’s a better bet to reach for fruit instead of your wine glass at the stroke of midnight.

Walmart Grocery

Order up some grapes for good luck.

Black-Eyed Peas

Sure, Fergie may make an appearance on your television screen during the countdown, but we’re talking about another type of black-eyed pea. In the U.S., particularly in the southern parts of the country, black-eyed peas are thought to bring wealth in the coming year. Often served with ham, which also has positive connotations (more on that later), this dish definitely deserves a spot on your table on New Year’s Day.

Soba Noodles

Toshikoshi Soba is a traditional noodle dish enjoyed in Japan on Dec. 31 to help usher in the following year. Because they’re easy to cut through, the noodles are meant to symbolize breaking off bad luck from the previous year, while the long noodles represent a lengthy (and hopefully healthy!) life.


In Turkey and Greece, there exists one tradition where the food isn’t exactly eaten. As midnight nears, revelers smash a pomegranate on the floor near the doorstep—the harder the better. The more pieces the fruit, which represents fertility and prosperity, breaks into, the more good fortune will come your way as the calendar flips.


Commonly served in Greece and the surrounding area, vasilopita is a cake that contains a hidden coin or bauble in the baked good. Whoever ends up with the item in their slice can expect a prosperous next 12 months, while the ritual of slicing the cake for those gathered is meant to bring good luck to the household for the coming year.


Since pigs typically “root forward,” representing forward motion or advancement, pork, ham, and roasted pig are popular New Year’s choices for a number of cultures around the globe. In Cuba, families gather around a roasted pig on a spit for eating, dancing, and celebrating together. In Austria, suckling pig is the centerpiece of the New Year’s Day meal, representing good fortune in the coming year. Pig shaped trinkets, sometimes called Glücksschwein, are also common treats in Germany, Austria, and the neighboring region.

And two to skip…

On the flip side of the coin, there are two categories of foods that are probably better to skip on this holiday.

You’ll want to skip chicken, because they “scratch backwards” for food (which could symbolize having to scrounge in the coming year) and have wings (which means your luck could fly away).

Though you might be hankering for a fancy meal as “Auld Lang Syne” plays in the background, lobster shouldn’t be on the menu. Because these guys move sideways or backwards, not forward, eating it on New Year’s could lead you to misfortune or setbacks in the coming year. The more you know.

Related Video: How to Open a Bottle of Champagne the Right Way

Header image courtesy of Ekaterina Smirnova / Moment / Getty Images

New Year’s Traditions Offer Recipe For Luck

(NBC News) To say this past year was full of challenges is putting it mildly it is no wonder people around the globe are ready for a new year.

Personal chef Jill Aker-Ray says food is often believed to be the way to good luck and fortune.

"In Roman culture it was very traditional to give a leather bag of lentils. in hopes of it turnings into gold coins," she says.

Some cultures have a smashing good time when seeking out their fortune.

"In Denmark it's tradition to go your neighbors home, take your old plate and you smash it at the doorway, and the more shards that you get, the more luck you have in the coming year," Aker-Ray says. "In Greek culture pomegranates at the stroke of midnight are pummeled at the front door of the home. The more seeds that fall the more good fortune you have.

Soba noodles are the New Year's food of choice in Asian cultures, where slurping the noodles without breaking them is said to bring good luck.

Spaniards prefer grapes, popping one at each stroke of midnight representing the months of the year.

One of the sweetest traditions includes a peppermint pig, for prosperity. After it's smashed, each piece represents the sweetness of the coming year.

And while you may not want to clean on New Year's, it may help move 2020 into the past.

"In Mexico, many tias and abuelas sweep out every corner of the house to brush away and get the bad and stagnant energy and residual dirt in to the coming year," Aker-Ray says.

Christmas Eve Salad

In most Mexican families, Christmas is celebrated on December 24 th . Presents are opened at the stroke of midnight of the 25 th after a day full of tamales and champurrado. Families pray and admire elaborate nativity scenes that have taken generations in collecting prized religious pieces and relics. The smell of planta gobernadora or creosote bush line the nativity scenes and release a distinct musty but pleasant aroma. The smell of Christmas.

Part of the festivities leading up to Christmas Eve are nine days of posadas. Beginning on December 16 th , these novenas as they are called, represent each month of Mary’s pregnancy with Jesus.

Nine different homes host a posada every day, praying the rosary, re-enacting through song Mary and Joseph asking in-keepers for lodging. When they are finally recognized and allowed in the home, everyone gathers to pray, enjoy a feast, celebrate and sing villancicos (carols). Children break a piñata with a clay pot inside, full of fruit and candy and are given a bolo (goody bag) full of peanuts, oranges and colorful candies filled with peanuts or orange peel called colación. These pretty little candies are also given as a reward to those who kiss or “adore” baby Jesus once he’s been placed in the Nativity scene.

Ensalada de Noche Buena, or Christmas Eve Salad plays an intricate part of this traditional feast. Named after the Poinsettia (Noche Buena), which also means Christmas Eve in Spanish, it resembles the beauty and colorful plant that we are so fond of every holiday season. Arranged in a circle, similar to a flower and accented by bright crimson pomegranate arils, like jewels on a wreath, this delicious salad is sweet, savory and crunchy for all to enjoy.

Recipe developed for Nestle Kitchens.
Photo by Nestle Kitchens

Sofia’s Vasilopita

Sofia’s Vasilopita is a traditional Greek New Years Eve cake, made with sweet spices and is baked with a coin in the centre. The recipient of the coin once the cake is sliced and served will enjoy good fortune for the year ahead.

Keyword cake, dessert, easy recipe, greece, greekdesserts, greekfood, greekrecipe, greeksweets, newyearseve, sweet, vasilopita


  • 375 g white sugar
  • 6 65g eggs at room temperature
  • 250 g unsalted butter melted
  • 110 ml milk
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate soda
  • 180 ml orange juice freshly squeezed from 1 orange
  • 15 g vanillin sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 10-15 ml brandy, cognac or rum
  • zest of one orange finely grated
  • 675 g self-raising flour sifted
  • 100 g walnuts coarsely chopped
  • 100 g sultanas
  • 100 g glacé cherries quartered
  • 1 small coin
  • baking paper


Preparing the Vasilopita

Beat the sugar with the eggs with either a hand-held or stand-up mixer, until the mixture is pale – approximately 4 minutes

Slowly add all but a small amount of the melted butter and mix in well (reserve the remaining butter to baste the cake tin)

Slowly add the milk and mix in well

Ensure the orange juice is in a tall glass

Over the mixing bowl, add the bicarbonate soda to the orange juice and mix these well, before adding them to the cake mixture

While continuing to beat the ingredients, add the vanillin sugar, ground cloves, cinnamon, brandy and the orange zest

Add the flour, one spoonful at a time, while continuing to beat the cake mixture

Reserve one spoonful of the flour

Place the walnuts, sultanas, glacé cherries and reserved flour in a bowl and stir them thoroughly, ensuring all the pieces are coated in flour

Add these ingredients to the cake mixture and continue to beat the mixture till all the fruit and nut pieces are dispersed through the cake batter

Wash, dry and wrap a small coin in baking paper add this to the cake mixture and mix the batter well

Baste the base and side of a spring-form pan (approximately 25cm diameter and 7.5cm depth) with the reserved butter

Line the cake pan with baking paper and baste that as well

Pour the cake mixture into the pan and tap the pan on its sides and base to spread the mixture evenly in the pan

Baking the Vasilopita

Place the cake pan in a fan-forced oven preheated to 160°C

Do not open the oven door for the first hour

After the cake has baked for an hour, insert a long skewer into the centre of the cake through a natural crack in the surface of the cake. If the skewer comes out with uncooked batter on it, return the cake to the oven and bake it for another 5-10 minutes. Check the cake once again with a new skewer. When the skewer comes out clean or lightly crumbed, remove the cake from the oven and allow it to cool for 10 minutes in the pan

Carefully remove the cake from the pan, peel away the baking paper from the base of the cake and cool it further on a cake rack

Once the cake has completely cooled, decorate it with a generous dusting of icing sugar and using pomegranate arils or toasted almond slivers or flakes, write the letter Χ and Π, which stand for Χρόνια Πολλά, on the top

Serving the Vasilopita

Serve the Vasilopita at the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Day or during your celebration later that day

Traditionally the first slice is reserved for Jesus and the second for the family home where the celebration is taking place

The following piece is served to the eldest person at the gathering. Continuing on, the next eldest is served and so on

The person lucky enough to find the coin in their slice of cake is said to have prosperity and good fortune all through the New Year

Behind the scenes of Tortellini at Midnight

It’s been over a year in the making (more if you count the ones where this idea was taking shape in my mind!) and there are still another three months to wait but I couldn’t resist giving you a peek at the behind the scenes of the making of my upcoming cookbook, Tortellini at Midnight, which will be released in the UK, US and Australia in March 2019.

Like Florentine and Acquacotta (you can peek at their behind the scenes stories too, here and here), I’ve been blessed to work with the same incredible team on the recipe photographs — photographer Lauren Bamford and stylist Deb Kaloper — as well as designer Allison Colpoys. It’s simply amazing to see this book coming together and take on a tangible form, after having the idea for it floating around in my head for years. It really is a lot like watching a baby grow inside your belly (which did also actually happen my second daughter, Luna, was born two weeks after I handed in the manuscript!).

What inspired Tortellini at Midnight is a love story, a story of a family that moved from the heel of Italy to its top in search of a better life. It is a collection of heirloom family recipes from my Italian in-laws, which I have traced back through generations that span the length of Italy, from the southern port city of Taranto to elegant Turin in the north, and finally, back to Tuscany, where we — my sommelier husband Marco Lami and I with our two daughters — call home.

Central to the book are the stories behind those who cooked the recipes. It begins with Anna Michela Comasia Maria Calianno, a noblewoman from Taranto who eloped with the postman, and her polpette, which are still being cooked in the family over a century later. Then there is her petite Tuscan daughter-in-law, Lina (decidedly the best cook in the family), who refused to use minced meat for her ragu her son, Mario (dapper, Taranto-born, Turin-raised lover of cheese and Neapolitan songs), known for his wobbly crema-laden cake and treats like fried mozzarella sandwiches her granddaughter, Angela, whose job in the kitchen growing up was to grate the Parmesan cheese (for a family of cheese lovers this was no small feat) and whose lasagne (made with store-bought grated cheese) is the most requested now at family gatherings. And her great grandson, Marco, who is heavy-handed with the wine (of course) when cooking.

Why tortellini at midnight? Eating tortellini is close to time traveling for Marco. In brodo or in sugo, they are the taste of Sundays. Nonna Lina would offer them most Sundays, she had long done so. Sometime in the 1950s, long before Tuscans celebrated New Year’s with a party, Marco’s grandfather, Mario, started a trend serving bowls of tortellini in sugo at the stroke of midnight in his father-in-law’s bar, which was known as Ciuccellino. Accompanied by a glass of cheap spumante and rounds of Tombola, this is how they would ring in the new year.

I took several trips to Piedmont and Puglia for “research” (including family history research but really eating, mostly, and taking photographs for the location photographs throughout the book) and we photographed the recipes here in Tuscany, in my dream house — Valdirose. Irene Berni and her family are just about the sweetest, most generous, most genuine people you will ever meet and their family home-turned B&B was the perfect setting. I also had the help of Alice Kiandra Adams and my intern, Helen Johnson, in the kitchen, my mother-in-law Angela, who brought her lasagne and chicken roll to lunch on her birthday and my husband Marco helping cook, clean and look after children! There was a 6 week old (mine), a four month old (Lauren’s), a 5 year old (mine also) and an 8 year old (Alice’s!) on the shoot too, all during the hottest heatwave of the Tuscan summer, what an amazing week we had! I am so grateful. I cannot wait to share this with you.

Tortellini at Midnight is now available for pre-order here. And keep an eye on the events page, in February and March I’ll be hosting dinners, talks, book signings, cooking classes and workshops in Canberra, Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. Then in late March I’ll be in London and some fabulous workshops are being planned for Lisbon in May, Greece in June and Tuscany in November — stay tuned!

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