Saturday, December 20, 2008

Italy

And we make it to Italy... I wish we had practiced more with making pasta, I really enjoyed that. But we made Gnocchi Piedmontese (which I realize is kind of like making pasta), Insalata di fruiti di mare, and Saltimbocca. Oh, and just for fun, we got to make pizza.


Meet Mr. Octopus. He has a mouth! and an Ink Sack! Yum!





Gnocchi:
To be honest, I don't like gnocchi. I really wasn't that motivated to learn this. Also, I was really tired this week - I was starting to hit a worn out phase again. So this really isn't a good example of what they should look like. No need to judge - I already did.
Boil potatoes whole with skin in salted water until soft and peel. While very hot, pass through food mill, until smooth. Add olive oil and when it cools slightly mix in egg well. Gradually kneed in flour to form a stiff but slightly tacky dough. This is similar to pasta: make a pile of the potato, form a well, and add the olive oil and egg. Add more flour as needed. Roll, cut and score. To score it, press lightly against the back of a fork to indent, then peel away. Cook in boiling salted water for 5-10 minutes or until they float. in a warm saute pan, lightly toss with butter, olive oil, garlic, sage, salt and pepper. Here, we just tossed with browned butter and sage.
Beurre Noisette a'la Sauge (browned butter): in saucepan, melt butter and cook till milk solids at the bottom of the pan start to turn brown - do not burn!!! Take off heat, and add sage.


Insalata di Fruit di Mare
Cook seafood (shrimp, squid, clams) in poaching liquid. Par cook octopus in water and white wine, enough to cover. This will allow you to remove the skin. Bring to boil, shut off, add octopus, and leave 30 minutes.
Combine with red onion, celery, carrot, red pepper, and green olives. Marinate in extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice, white wine vinegar, garlic clove, capers, oregano, basil, parsley, salt and pepper:
Marinate at least one hour, but ideally overnight.



Saltimbocca di Pollo alla Sorrentina
Slightly pound chicken out after removing skin and wing joint. Season with salt and pepper and dust in flour. Top each piece of chicken with sage, salt, mozzarella, and then proscuitto. Pound out. Saute, then place in oven until cooke.
For tomato sauce: Render bacon, remove bacon, then sweat mire poix. Add tomato puree, chopped tomatoes with juice, salt, sugar, fennel, oregano, thyme, and chili flakes. Simmer 15-30 minutes, then put through food mill.


Meanwhile, T. made some pizza.
He went for the classic. This was good, but I ate it when it was too hot. Like I always do. And then I end up with a burned tongue instead of being able to taste how good pizza is...


Look, it was Rico's birthday!
Okay, well, actually her birthday was the night before, but she had taken the evening off to be with her mother.


Lessons Learned:
I learned some nice recipes that were a little different from the pasta variety. I'd like to try make the polenta recipe we were given sometime. And maybe figure out how T made that pizza from scratch...
mmm cake. now I want some again!

1 comment:

onlinepastrychef said...

Major props to you if you had to cut all those batonets for the salad! Everything looks wonderful!