Cream of escarole with Speck and croutons is a perfect idea for warm dinners in the first cold days of autumn. Being vegetable-based, the cream itself is naturally gluten free and has very low carbohydrate content, possibly offset by the addition of fragrant and tasty croutons.

Escarole cream is very much appreciated by those who like slightly bitter flavours, while it might not appeal to children who are not used to these notes: my children love it and enjoy alternating Speck with cubes of sweet Salame Felino  (something that Parma’s homes almost always have in stock) which helps to balance the dish.

The version I propose is also lactose and egg free. If you like, and always lactose free, you can also season it with Parmesan cheese slivers and a few walnuts for a completely different taste.

In the calculation of carbohydrates, I have not considered croutons because the amount added to the escarole cream may vary greatly, as can the type of bread we decide to use to prepare them: personally, I am partial to wholemeal bread, such as the Dark bread with flax seedswhich allows us to obtain very fragrant croutons.

So with the cold weather approaching, be prepared that we won’t run out of creams and soups!

Escarole Cream with Speak and croutons   

2.70g carbohydrates per 100g without croutons

Ingredients for 4 servings

  • 1kg escarole
  • 300g leek
  • 300g vegetable stock
  • 120g Speck in strips*
  • 30g extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper

Ingredients for croutons

  • 3 slices of wholemeal bread**
  • 30g extra virgin olive oil
  • salt, pepper, dried marjoram


  1. Slice the leeks and sautée them in a large saucepan with extra virgin olive oil and a few whole chilli peppers, which you will then remove before blending; add the escarole cut into strips, allow it to take on flavour for about 5 minutes, then add 2 ladles of stock, cover and cook for 15 minutes. Transfer everything into the jar of a food processor and blend to a fairly thick cream; season with salt and pepper. Should the cream be too runny, return it to the heat and let it thicken.
  2. Meanwhile, prepare the croutons. Cut the bread slices into 2cm pieces. Heat extra virgin olive oil in a non-stick frying pan, add the bread pieces and let them toast slowly until crispy. Towards the end, season with salt, pepper and a sprinkling of marjoram, then leave to season and turn off the heat.
  3. Serve the escarole cream in soup plates and complete with the Speck in strips, croutons and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.

Crema di scarola con speck e crostini

Version with gluten of Escarole cream with Speak and croutons

The recipe contains only naturally gluten free ingredients except for the croutons, so replace the gluten free croutons with standard croutons.

Pizza is one of the symbols par excellence of Italian cuisine, a dish capable of brightening up evenings with friends, a family lunch, but also perfect for snacks or aperitifs. Yet pizza is a major challenge for both those with diabetes and those with celiac disease, albeit for completely different reasons.

For those with diabetes, pizza is a challenge for blood glucose control as it is one of the most difficult foods to predict in terms of short-, medium- and long-term blood glucose rise. So we should always be careful when consuming it!

For those with celiac disease, pizza is a challenge because the crispness of the dough is hardly comparable to pizzas made with conventional flours.

Despite the challenges, Pizza with Potatoes is definitely one of a thousand ways to prepare this iconic dish and I hope it gives you a moment of joy. Try it out and let me know how the experience went.

Pizza with potatoes

68.27g carbohydrates per 100g of baked pizza without topping

Ingredients for the pizza base

  • 450g flour mix for bread, brand Nutrifree**
  • 450g water
  • 250g potatoes (weight of cooked and peeled potatoes)
  • 250g cherry tomatoes
  • 50g buckwheat flour*
  • 50g wholemeal rice flour*
  • 20g brewer’s yeast
  • extra virgin olive oil, fine and coarse salt, oregano

**Ingredients specific for celiacs

*Ingredients whose labels must read “gluten-free” (or, in Italy, present on  Prontuario AIC)


  1. Take the flours, put them in a bowl or planetary mixer and mix with water in which you have dissolved the yeast. Knead, then add fine salt and 4 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. Once everything is mixed together, place the dough in the mixing bowl to rise for about 2 hours.
  2. Meanwhile, boil the potatoes and, once cooked, peel, mash and let them cool.
  3. Take the risen dough, add the mashed potatoes and mix until the potatoes are completely incorporated.
  4. Now divide the dough into 4 parts, lay each part on a baking tin covered with parchment paper; let the pizzas rise for as long as it takes to heat the oven, then bake them at 220°C until ¾ done.

Adding tomato to pizza

  1. Remove the pizza from the oven, top it with tomato sauce, mozzarella and oregano and finish cooking for the remaining time. In total it should be about 25 minutes.

Adding mozzarella

We topped the pizza in a simple way, but you can let your imagination guide you to create flavour combinations according to your preferences.


The ready-to-eat pizza

Version with gluten of Pizza with potatoes

Prepare the dough with 500g wheat flour and knead it with 300g water.