Big & Little Cooks – Italian – Recipes

Big & Little Cooks – Italian – Recipes

We hope you enjoyed your evening at Food Sorcery, if you have any questions for chef please get in touch and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

Sweet potato gnocchi with marinara sauce, Crispy parmesan coated chicken.

Chocolate fondant with ice-cream.

Crispy parmesan chicken

Ingredients – Serves 2

  • 2 chicken breasts
  • Seasoning
  • Plain flour for dusting
  • 70g panko breadcrumbs
  • 40g grated parmesan
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • Rapeseed oil for frying
  • 1x lemon, zest and juice

Method

    1. Place the chicken breasts between cling film sheets and lightly bat, until about half to one centimetre/quarter to half an inch thick. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Dust in flour to coat thoroughly.
    2. Mix together the breadcrumbs and parmesan and lemon zest.
    3. Dip the flattened chicken breasts (escalopes) in the beaten egg, followed by the Parmesan breadcrumbs.
    4. Heat some rapeseed oil in a large frying pan. Once sizzling, add the crumbed escalopes and cook for three to four minutes on each side until crispy and golden.
    5. Serve with sprinkle of course salt and squeeze of lemon juice.

Sweet Potato Gnocchi

Ingredients 

  • 1 sweet potato medium
  • 1.5 cups of flour (‘00’ or plain)
  • 15g of grated parmesan
  • Seasoning

Method

  1. Bake the sweet potato on 180C for roughly 45 minutes or until soft.

    Let it cool down, peel and discard the skin.

    Mix all the rest of the ingredients in a bowl, start forming a dough. You might need more flour as every potato is different.

    Work the dough on floured surface with your hand, adding more flour if too sticky.

    Form a dough ball, wrap it in cling film and rest in the fridge for at least 20 minutes.

    Form gnocchi shaped little dumplings.

    Get a pan of salted boiling water ready and boil the gnocchi for approximately 2 minutes until they start floating on top.

    Strain and cool down.

    Finally, we can either pan-fry our gnocchi or just drop them directly into hot pasta sauce to warm up.

Marinara Sauce

A quick and simple sauce recipe which is full of flavour. What’s not to like and tastes so much better than store bought versions.

Ingredients – Serves 4

  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tin of plum tomatoes
  • 1 sprig of basil, whole
  • 1 tbsp of parsley, chopped
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil

 

 

Method

  1. Heat the oil in a small sauce pan and add onion and garlic, sauté for a couple of minutes until translucent.
  2. Add tomatoes, balsamic and sprig of basil and simmer for 15-20 minutes.
  3. Season well and add the lemon zest and parsley at the end.
  4. Blitz with a hand hald bender or mixer until it’s a smooth sauce.

Cream Cheese and Ricotta Tortellini

Ingredients 

For the pasta (makes more dough than needed for this recipe)

  • 4 large free-range egg yolks
  • 200g ‘00’ flour, plus extra for dusting
  •  

For the filling

  • 150g ricotta
  • 50g cream Cheese

Method

  1. Mound the flour and salt together on a work surface and form a well. Beat the teaspoon of olive oil, 2 eggs, and water in a bowl. Pour half the egg mixture into the well. Begin mixing the egg with the flour with one hand; use your other hand to keep the flour mound steady. Add the remaining egg mixture and knead to form a dough.
  2. Knead the dough until smooth, 8 to 10 minutes; add more flour if the dough is too sticky. Form the dough into a ball and wrap tightly with plastic. Refrigerate for 1 hour.
  3. Combine the ricotta cheese, and cream cheese, set the filling aside.
  4. To assemble the tortellini, roll the pasta dough through all the sizes on the pasta machine starting with the widest setting and finishing on the smallest setting when the pasta is very thin. Using a 9cm/3½in round cutter, cut out 10 circles. (Any leftover dough can be frozen to use another time.)
  5. Spoon a heaped teaspoon amount of filling inside each pasta circle and fold in half to create a half moon shape. Wet the edges and press down to help them stick. Pull the two narrow ends together to form a tortellini shape.
  6. Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil. Cook the pasta in the boiling water for 2–3 minutes, or until al dente. Drain well.

Food Sorcery Chocolate Fondant

Who can resist the scrumptious taste of chocolate, chef showed us how to make the perfect melt in the middle pudding.

Ingredients – makes 6

  • 150g butter, plus extra for greasing
  • 150g dark chocolate (60-70% cocoa solids), roughly chopped or broken into small chunks
  • 90g plain flour (25g for moulds, 75g for cake mix)
  • 25g cocoa powder
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 200g caster sugar
  • Vanilla ice cream, crème fraiche, mint & berries

Method

  1. 1. Preheat the oven to 190˚C/170˚C fan/Gas 5
  2. 2. Grease 6 ramekins with butter.
  3. 3. Mix together the cocoa powder and 25g of plain flour and dust the inside of the moulds, place them on a baking sheet and set aside.
  4. 4. Put the butter and chocolate into a large heatproof bowl set over a pan of gently simmering water (don’t let the bottom of the bowl touch the water underneath) and leave until melted, stirring occasionally
  5. 5. Remove from the heat, sift over the flour and then whisk it in
  6. 6. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, egg yolks and sugar until combined, then whisk this into the chocolate mixture, until smooth and well combined
  7. 7. Pour the chocolate mixture into the ramekins.
  8. 8. Bake for 9 minutes – the fondants are ready when you shake each one gently and only the middle moves a little
  9. 9. Remove from the oven, and gently loosen the edge.
  10. Carefully invert each fondant onto aplate. Serve with crème fraiche or vanilla ice cream, mint and berries.

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Chocolate Fondant

Ingredients

  • 185g unsalted butter
  • 185g best dark chocolate
  • 85g plain flour
  • 40g cocoa powder
  • 50g white chocolate
  • 50g milk chocolate
  • 3 large eggs
  • 275g golden caster sugar

Method

Cut 185g unsalted butter into small cubes and tip into a medium bowl. Break 185g dark chocolate into small pieces and drop into the bowl.

Fill a small saucepan about a quarter full with hot water, then sit the bowl on top so it rests on the rim of the pan, not touching the water. Put over a low heat until the butter and chocolate have melted, stirring occasionally to mix them.

Remove the bowl from the pan. Alternatively, cover the bowl loosely with cling film and put in the microwave for 2 minutes on High. Leave the melted mixture to cool to room temperature.

While you wait for the chocolate to cool, position a shelf in the middle of your oven and turn the oven on to 180C/160C fan/gas 4.

Using a shallow 20cm square tin, cut out a square of non-stick baking parchment to line the base. Tip 85g plain flour and 40g cocoa powder into a sieve held over a medium bowl. Tap and shake the sieve so they run through together and you get rid of any lumps.


Chop 50g white chocolate and 50g milk chocolate into chunks on a board.

Break 3 large eggs into a large bowl and tip in 275g golden caster sugar. With an electric mixer on maximum speed, whisk the eggs and sugar. They will look thick and creamy, like a milk shake. This can take 3-8 minutes, depending on how powerful your mixer is. You’ll know it’s ready when the mixture becomes really pale and about double its original volume. Another check is to turn off the mixer, lift out the beaters and wiggle them from side to side. If the mixture that runs off the beaters leaves a trail on the surface of the mixture in the bowl for a second or two, you’re there.

Pour the cooled chocolate mixture over the eggy mousse, then gently fold together with a rubber spatula. Plunge the spatula in at one side, take it underneath and bring it up the opposite side and in again at the middle. Continue going under and over in a figure of eight, moving the bowl round after each folding so you can get at it from all sides, until the two mixtures are one and the colour is a mottled dark brown. The idea is to marry them without knocking out the air, so be as gentle and slow as you like.

Hold the sieve over the bowl of eggy chocolate mixture and resift the cocoa and flour mixture, shaking the sieve from side to side, to cover the top evenly.

Gently fold in this powder using the same figure of eight action as before. The mixture will look dry and dusty at first, and a bit unpromising, but if you keep going very gently and patiently, it will end up looking gungy and fudgy. Stop just before you feel you should, as you don’t want to overdo this mixing.

Finally, stir in the white and milk chocolate chunks until they’re dotted throughout.

Pour the mixture into the prepared tin, scraping every bit out of the bowl with the spatula. Gently ease the mixture into the corners of the tin and paddle the spatula from side to side across the top to level it.

Put in the oven and set your timer for 25 mins. When the buzzer goes, open the oven, pull the shelf out a bit and gently shake the tin. If the brownie wobbles in the middle, it’s not quite done, so slide it back in and bake for another 5 minutes until the top has a shiny, papery crust and the sides are just beginning to come away from the tin. Take out of the oven.

Leave the whole thing in the tin until completely cold, then, if you’re using the brownie tin, lift up the protruding rim slightly and slide the uncut brownie out on its base. If you’re using a normal tin, lift out the brownie with the foil. Cut into quarters, then cut each quarter into four squares and finally into triangles.

They’ll keep in an airtight container for a good two weeks and in the freezer for up to a month.