• “Fish should smell like the ocean. If they smell like fish, it's too late.”

  • Scale by scale, We strip off The delicacy And eat The peaceful mush Of its green heart.

  • Give me a good sharp knife and a good sharp cheese and I’m a happy man

Italian flatbread with extra virgin olive oil and lemon zest (Piadina Romagnola lard-free)


Piadina Romagnola flatbread is made of ingredients which can slightly vary depending on local tradition in the Romagna region of Italy. The original recipe used by my grandmother Emma (born in 1913) involved the use of lard and lemon zest. My mother has changed the recipe, replacing lard with extra virgin olive oil, to please my vegetarian niece, Alice. The result is still a fragrant flatbread that goes well with cheese and cured meats but also with jam or Nutella. My grandmother used to cook the flatbread on a terracotta dish called "testo", directly on the fireplace. The flatbread cooked like that was simply divine, a combination of flavours and smell of burning wood.

Difficulty: Easy
Makes 5 large and thick round flatbreads
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 15 minutes
Total: 25 minutes
Egg-free; Low fat; Vegetarian

500g (1lb 2 oz) plain flour
5 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp of baking powder
Zest of ½ lemon
1 tsp of table salt
Warm water

1. Mix all ingredients in a large bowl with warm water and a little bit of milk. Start mixing using a fork then by hands until you get a dough soft and elastic. Shape the dough into a ball, cover with a clean kitchen towel and leave to rest for about 1 hour at room temperature.
3. Split the dough into 5 parts.
4. Roll out each part with a rolling pin to shape a round flatbread half a centimetre thick and big as a flat serving dish.
5. Cook the piadina on a "testo" or use a flat pan over medium heat and poke the top with a fork . Keep moving and poking the flatbread while cooking (this will prevent bubbles). Once is golden brown, turn the piadina over and bake the other side. As you bake them, transfer them to a cooling rack.

NOTE: Piadina can be frozen and re-heated in the toaster. In this case, however, would be better to make them in rectangular shape instead of round.