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Italian Cooking Together Recipes – Butternut Tortellini, risotto with sea bass

Cooking Together Italian Recipes

Our cooking together events are as much about learning to cook as they are a sociable experience. We hope you enjoyed your class and are ready to recreate the meals at home. 

We Cooked:

  1. Starter: Squash and Mozzarella Tortellini with Creamy Sage Sauce.
  2. Main: Tomato and Pea Risotto with Pan-Fried Sea Bass.
  3. Dessert: Choose from the Food Sorcery favourites on the link below.

Pasta Dough – Starter

Ingredients:

  • 2 large eggs
  • 200g of 00 flour, plus extra for dusting

Method:

  1. Place 180g of the 00 flour onto a large wooden board. Pour the remaining 20g of flour into a small bowl, ready to use if necessary.
  2. Shape the flour into a volcano with a large hole in the centre, then crack the eggs and pour them into the middle.
  3. Using a fork, lightly beat the eggs, then mix in the flour a little at time. It is essential that the flour is gradually beaten into the eggs to ensure the walls of the volcano don’t break too soon. Add the reserved 20g of flour if the dough is too moist.
  4. Bring the mixture together with a spatula and your hands until you obtain a consistent ball of dough.
  5. Work the dough with the heel of your hand for 10–15 minutes, or until the mixture is smooth and very elastic. Wrap the dough in cling film and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
  6. Dust a wooden board with 1 tbsp of flour. Unwrap the dough and flatten it with a rolling pin. Roll out the dough into thin pasta sheets, less than 1mm thick.
  7. If you have a pasta machine, divide the dough into 4 before rolling it out. Flatten it to a rough square so that it fits through the machine at its highest setting. Roll it through & fold it back over it to itself. Rotate it through 90 degrees and repeat this a few times. This releases the gluten which increases the elasticity of the dough and stops it cracking & tearing. Now reduce the thickness of the machine 1 click at a time until you reach the 2nd  to last setting.

Butternut Squash and Mozzarella Tortellini – Starter

Ingredients – Serves 2:

For the Filling:

  • 1/2 small butternut squash
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
  • 1/2 medium shallot, roughly chopped (scant ½ cup)
  • 1/2 bulb of mozzarella, shredded
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled
  •  Fresh sage leaves to taste
  • 1 Recipe Homemade Pasta
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

For serving and sauce:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, sliced
  • Sage leaves to taste
  • 2 tablespoons dry white wine
  • 1 cup of double cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme
  • Pinch sea salt
  • Pinch ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup Roasted Butternut Squash cubes, optional
  • 1/4 bunch Sauteed Kale, optional
  • Grated pecorino cheese, optional

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 200C and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Roast the squash. Cut the squash in half vertically and use a spoon to scoop out the seeds. Drizzle with olive oil and pinches of salt and pepper and place cut side down on the baking sheet. Prick the skin several times with a fork and roast for 40 minutes. 
  3. Make the pasta dough according to this recipe. Wrap the dough ball in plastic wrap and set it aside to rest while you make the filling.
  4. Make the filling: Add the diced shallot, pureed garlic, squash, mozzarella and seasoning to a mixing bowl.
  5. Roll out the pasta dough into a long sheet, pushing it through the pasta machine twice on each setting, starting on the thickest and going down to number 2. Spread the 4 pasta sheets on a well-floured work surface. Cut with a round metal cutter,  use a 1tsp to portion to scoop the filling onto the circles of pasta. Stick edges of the pasta circles together and twist around your fingers to shape tortellini.Cook the tortellini in a pot of salted boiling water for 4 minutes. I like to drop them into the water as I’m ready to start my sauce so that they’re done around the same time.
  6. Make the sauce. Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and sage and cook for 3 minutes. Add the wine, thyme, and salt and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes.
  7. Add the double cream and cook until thicker.
  8. Spoon the sauce over the tortellini add freshly ground black pepper and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Add the roasted butternut squash cubes, sautéed kale, and grated pecorino, if desired.

Pea and tomato Risotto – Main

Ingredients – Serves 2:

  • 2 tsp Oil
  • 50g parmesan grated
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed into a paste
  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped
  • 160g risotto rice
  • 100ml white wine
  • 500ml vegetable stock
  • 200g chopped tomatoes
  • 100g garden peas
  • lemon zest and juice
  • fresh herbs such as basil, chives or parsley
  • 30g Butter

Method:

  1. Finely dice the onion and crush the garlic into a paste using salt.
  2. Add oil in a saucepan and cook the onion until soft and translucent. Add the garlic and cook for another minute.
  3. Add the rice and stir through the onions, cooking for a minute before adding the wine.
  4. Allow the wine to reduce, stirring to coat the rice, then add a ladle of the stock and chopped tomatoes. Once the stock is reduced, add another ladle and repeat the process until the stock is all used and the rice is just cooked.
  5. Add the peas and lemon zest with the final ladle of stock.
  6. Finish with grated parmesan, butter, chopped herbs and a squeeze of lemon.

How to pan-fry filleted fish such as sea bass or mackerel?

  1. Rub the mackerel/seabass fillets with oil.
  2. Sprinkle a pinch of salt in a non-stick pan and heat it up.
  3. Once the pan is smoking hot, add the fillet skin-side down. Turn the heat 
  4. down to medium-high. As the fillets curl up away from the heat, gently 
  5. apply pressure to the 
  6. fillet to ensure that the fish stays flat, and all the skin comes into contact 
  7. with the pan. 
  8. Cook for 2–4 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fillet. 
  9. Once the skin is crisp and golden, turn the fillet over and remove the pan 
  10. from the heat. Leave the fishin the pan to cook through in the residual heat, then serve up immediately

Braised Chicory – Main (Vegetarian Option)

Ingredients – Serves 2:

  • Two large Chicory Hearts
  • 4 Cloves of Garlic
  • 2 Sprigs of Fresh Thyme
  • 2 Sprigs of Rosemary
  • 100ml Wine
  • 200ml Vegetable Stock.
  • 50g Butter
  • Olive Oil
  • Salt & Pepper

Method:

  1. Slice the Chicory hearts in half, removing any inferior outer leaves,
  2. Heat a frying pan on the stove with a splash of olive oil, Season the Chicory hearts.
  3. Crush the garlic and pan fry the cloves on a medium heat along with the herbs for 1 minute to release the aromas.
  4. Place the hearts flat side down in the pan and seal for two minutes.
  5. Deglaze the pan with the wine, followed by the vegetable stock.
  6. Cover the pan with a lid or tinfoil and braise in the oven at 180c for 20-25 minutes.
  7. Once the chicory is cooked remove from the pan and allow to cool.
  8. When the risotto is nearly ready to serve;
  9. Heat a clean frying pan under a medium heat and once hot fry the chicory hearts flat side down for two minutes.
  10. Add the butter and while constantly moving the pan allow the butter to go a nut brown colour,
  11. Squeeze half a lemon into the pan to create a beurre noisette.
  12. Place the chicory onto the plated risotto and drizzle the beurre noisette over.
  13. For a variation you could add nuts or some dried fruit to the chicory and substitute the stock for a fruit juice.
  14. Why not try with Figs, hazelnut and orange juice for an autumnal flavour.

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We Hope You Enjoyed The Class

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