I’m going to start this off by saying we love food in the Treasure household so imagine my absolute delight when I was offered a huge hamper full of new food to try for the Expedia World on a Plate campaign* I was challenged to create a feast using foods from Malta. The hamper itself contained absolutely masses, in fact, it kept us going for an entire week. Safe to say we are now complete Maltese food converts.
Here’s what I came up with…
To begin, along with various pastries, we had traditional Maltese water biscuits called Galletti to try with Maltese cheese. I added a few fresh figs and grapes and this was all served as a posh starter!
For our main I used the traditional Maltese sausages to make meatball spaghetti with a very simple fresh tomato sauce:
- Maltese sausage (renowned for being salty so don’t add it at the cooking stage)
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 3 spring onions
- glug of olive oil
- 3 yellow tomatoes
- 3 red tomatoes
- a tin of chopped tomatoes
- half a glass of white wine
- Maltese goats cheese
- flat leaf parsley
- 1 packet uncooked spaghetti
- cut sausages into sections and form into balls
- thinly slice garlic and chop spring onions and add to frying pan with a glug of olive oil
- add sausages and brown
- add wine, cook for around 5 minutes
- add tinned tomatoes and cook for 20 minutes
- meanwhile, boil water for spaghetti and cook for 11 minutes
- add fresh tomatoes to sauce and cook for a few minutes
- add pasta straight to sauce and combine
- garnish with a handful of chopped parsley and a grating of goats cheese
I also made a traditional Maltese desert called ‘prinjolata’ the name comes from the word ‘prinjol’ which means pine nuts in Maltese. The prinjolata is usually prepared around carnival time and is instantly recognisable from its unusual shape. When ready, the prinjolata is supposed to resemble a snow-capped mountain. Ta-dah!
Technically you should make an egg sponge for this, but I have a life, so I used swiss roll don’t judge me! And have it on good authority from my friend Prabs (who lives in Malta) that swiss roll is indeed widely available in Malta, probably.
For the sponge:
- Swiss roll of course
For the filling:
- 1 tablespoon whiskey
- 50g pine nuts, chopped and roasted
- 50g glace cherries, chopped
- 250g softened margarine
- 2 tablespoons icing sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the topping:
- 250ml double cream
- 250g mascarpone cheese
- 50g glace cherries, halved
- 50g pine nuts, roasted
- 50g dark chocolate
- line the inside of a medium sized bowl with clingfilm
- slice swiss roll into 1-inch rounds and put them on the bottom of the bowl and up the sides
- depending on how big your bowl is you might want to add a double layer before you add the filling
- whisk together all of the filling ingredients and add them to the middle of the bowl
- finish by adding a final layer of swiss roll rounds to cover the filling. The top of the bowl is now the bottom of your dome cake. Simples!
- fold the clingfilm over the top of the bowl and put in the freezer
- after it’s firmed up in the freezer you can take it out to add the topping
- for the topping whisk together all the ingredients until thick and creamy
- lift the dome shape sponge from the bowl by pulling on the clingfilm, place on a plate and unwrap
- cover with the topping using a spatula, it doesn’t need to look perfect as it’s supposed to be a mountain remember?!
- melt the chocolate in the microwave and drizzle over the top and sides finish with the glace cherries and pine nuts.
We finished our Maltese feast with coffee and traditional biscuits which included honey rings Qaghaq Ta L – Ghasel, sweet biscuits with sesame seeds Buskutini Tal – Guglien, sweet biscuit with aniseed Buskutini Tal – Rahal, sweet biscuit with almonds and Kearesemar Krustini Tal Lews.
What a feast it was! I have been the hostess with the mostess all week supplying the builders doing work on our house with Maltese biscuits as there was so much leftover.
Have you ever eaten Maltese food or tried Prinjolata? I’d love to hear about your favourite cuisine in the comments and you can follow the challenge on Twitter by checking out #ExpediaWorldonaPlate
*Thanks so much to Expedia for providing us with such an amazing hamper full of food