Coffee between sweet and salty – Enrico Gambino

In via Sampolo, the heart Palermo, few steps away from the central via Libertà and from the port, the Bar Pasticceria Sampolo has been the temple of typical Sicilian pastries for over 50 years. In 1956, Salvatore Gambino realized that the street would have been perfect to launch his business – a Sicilian confectionery and the production of irresistible homemade ice-cream – as it was one of the oldest streets of the city, where all nobles of Palermo would spend their summer holidays.

A highly appropriate intuition, which was rewarded with the great attention to quality and research with respect to traditions. In the 1990s, his children Enrico and Carmela joined him. The first one took care of the laboratory and handmade production, taking his mentor’s advice to heart. His cream puffs are famous and, for us, he prepared them with coffee. “You measure real real talent – he tells those who work with him –with the preparation of simple pastries”.

Soave with coffee

Ingredients for the cream puffs: 125 ml water, 50 g butter, 75 g flour, 3 eggs, salt to taste;

For the milk cream: 450g fresh whole milk, 50g fresh cream, 150g caster sugar, 45g corn starch, 30g superfine flour, ¼ vanilla bean; half-whipped fresh cream: 500 ml cream, 25 g caster sugar, 2 cups of Moak espresso, 15 g Moak instant coffee.


for the cream puffs: put water in a small pot, add butter cut in pieces, bring to boil and then pour the sieved flour and mix energetically. Leave the mixture on fire for some minutes and keep on mixing and spreading it on the bottom of the pot until its dry and starts to sizzle. Remove from the fire, leave to cool and then amalgamate the two beaten eggs, one at a time. Put the mixture into a pastry bag with plain tip and arrange many small cream puffs (around 3 cm distance between them) on a baking tray covered with baking paper.

Put into the oven for around 20/25 min at a temperature of 125°with open valve.

For the milk cream: put milk, fresh cream, sugar and vanilla bean into a bowl. Pour 70% of the mixture in a small pot and bring to boil. Add sieved flours to the remaining 30%. Then add the mixture to the liquid and mix slowly until the cream thickens. Remove from the fire, leave to cool and sift until the mixture is fluid. Mix espresso and instant coffee, and add the partly whipped cream until you get a very soft cream.