Celebrity Maltese Chefs and Recipe Enthusiasts

Tonia Grima

Tonia Grima, born in Gozo on June 4th 1956, has shown an interest in cooking from a very tender age when she keenly observed her mother produce traditional dishes made from genuine ingredients, products of their family farm.
Tonia’s curiosity set her off on a journey of discovery about all that has to do with food. She has diligently followed a lot of courses both locally, abroad and online among them in French Patisserie in uk; Pastry and Baking Basic Concepts at ITS Malta; a Chocolate Course by master Mark Tilling in UK; a number of Cake baking and Decoration Courses both locally and in UK; and many other cooking courses and classes in Malta or UK.
She gradually developed her own recipes which are characterized by being relatively easy to prepare but at the same time scrumptious. Her food tasters are her husband Benny and son Ruby. Tonia insists on using genuine ingredients and keeps in mind the busy person who deserves an enjoyable home-cooked meal.
She has become a television personality by carrying out cooking sessions on TV. Being a generous person, she generously shares her ideas and love for food preparation with others. She has also shared her ideas with relatives and friends through a book she published in 2013, Cooking My Way.

Sweet Ricotta Stuffed Cannoli Shell...

Read in Maltese

In a food processor, pulse the flour, sugar and salt. Add the butter and pulse again until there aren’t clumps of butter. Add the marsala wine and whole egg and pulse to mix well (if needed add more marsala wine) to bring the dough together in a soft dough. Shape into a round, cover, and let rest at room temperature for at least 30 minutes and up to 1 hour. Heat the oil in a large deep pot for a temperature of 180c. In the meantime, working with half of the dough at a time, and keeping the other half covered. Roll the dough very thinly onto a well flowered surface. Using a 4 to 4 1/2 inches cookie cutter, cut dough into rounds. Spray lightly the cannoli forms with cooking spray, then wrap these dough rounds around each cannoli form, while brushing about 3/4 inches of one end lightly with the egg white. Press edge of the dough to the opposite side of the dough brushed with the egg white. Carefully immerse 3 or 4 cannoli at a time in the heated oil and fry until golden brown and crisp. This takes about 1 to 2 minutes. ( always check the temperature so that the oil will not burn the cannoli ) Remove from the oil using a metal tong to grasp the cannoli shells ( let oil from inside the forms drain back into the pot ) Transfer onto paper towels to drain. Fold layers of paper towels and wrap a paper towel around the shell to carefully slide from the form. Let the forms to cool and repeat process with the remaining dough circles. At this point one could store these cannoli shells in a sealed box covered with baking paper, then place the cannoli and cover again with baking paper.  

For the filling, in a bowl, mix the Irkotta, icing sugar and whole nuts. Brush some melted chocolate in the inside of the cannoli shells. Dip both sides of the cannoli shells in the melted chocolate and then in the chopped pistachios and let these to dry. Spoon the filling in a piping bag and cut the tip of the piping bag. ( about 3/4 inches down from the tip ) Fill the cannoli shells by piping the filling from both sides of the cannoli shells. Place the filled cannoli on a plate and sift the icing sugar over the ready-made cannoli. Recipe by Tonia Grima

Cabbage Lasagne

Read in Maltese

In a deep oven dish do a layer of sliced potatoes. Cover with a layer of cabbage. In a separate bowl, mix the ricotta with the eggs, salt and pepper and spread it over the cabbage. Spread some grated cheese. Cover with another layer of the remaining cabbage. Do another layer of the sliced potatoes. Sprinkle the top with hot paprika and a dash of oil. Bake in oven at a temperature of 180c until the potatoes have a golden colour.

Marrows Balbuljata

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In a pan over medium heat the oil and add the onion. Cook for around 2 minutes. Add the carrots and the garlic and continue frying, stirring from time to time. Add the peas, the chicken spoon stock, salt and pepper. Continue frying for another minute and then add the minced pork and cook until well cooked. Add the marrows and continue frying till the marrows become a little tender but not soft. Mix in the tomato paste, sugar and water and continue frying for about 2 minutes. Beat the eggs in a bowl and mix them with the ingredients in the frying pan until well incorporated. Add the grated cheese and serve.

Baked Macaroni

Read in Maltese

Boil the macaroni according to instructions on the packet. In the meantime, in a pan fry the onions in the 3 tbsp oil. Add the garlic, carrots, salt and pepper and continue frying stirring from time to time. Add the minced pork and fry till the meat is almost done. Add the chicken stock together with the 1/2 glass of water and mix all together. Add the tomato paste and the peas and stir all together. Put the heat off. Drain the macaroni when they are ready and mix in the eggs and the grated cheese. Pour the sauce over the macaroni and mix all well. Pour all into a deep oven dish. Sprinkle some paprika on top and also a dash of oil. Bake on the middle shelf of the oven, temperature 200c until the top gets a golden colour. More or less it takes around 35 to 45 minutes.

Alexandrina’s Tart

For the pasty, in a food processor, pulse together the flour, sugar, butter and salt. Add the beaten eggs and form a dough. Wrap this dough in cling film and place it in the fridge for about 2 hours.

For the filling, in a bowl mash the Irkotta and mix with it the chocolate, 6 tbsp sugar, hazelnuts and cherries. In another bowl mix the breadcrumbs, lemon zest and juice, milk, 6 tbsp sugar, eggs and coconut.

To assemble tart, line 2 cake tins 25cm by 18cm. Cut the pastry in two and roll each piece on a lightly floured surface. Roll it open enough to cover the bottom and sides of the tins. Prick the bottom with a fork and place the two tins in the fridge for about 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 200c. Cover the dough bottom and sides with baking paper and weigh it down with dried beans or rice and bake for about 12 minutes. Remove the baking paper with the beans or rice and bake for another 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let them cool a little. Trim the edges. Divide the irkotta mix between the 2 tins and spread it evenly over the pastry. Mix the bread mix and bake for another 30 to 40 minutes. Let the tarts cool completely and place them in the fridge. For the topping, whip together the ingredients for the topping until forming a thick consistency.

To decorate, cover the top of the tart with cream leaving some to do the design on top. One could also spread some crispy dried fruits or spread some melted chocolate. Keep this tart in the fridge.