—- Italian Masterclass with Valentina Harris —-
A Simple 4 Course Dinner Party Menu for a fabulously Italian Dinner Party, guaranteed to cheer you up in the deep mid winter
Antipasti: Polpette di Funghi with Tomato Sauce
Primo: Malfatti/Spinach Gnocchi
Secondo: Stuffed Duck with Peverada Sauce and Patate arrosto alla Veneziana
Dolce: Torta di Zucca/Soft Pumpkin Cake with Zabaglione
I have mainly looked to the northern regions of Italy for my inspiration for this menu, but by February the almond blossom is in bright pink bloom in Sicily, and the last fruits of the citrus season – the gorgeously decadent blood oranges – make their brief and precious appearance, so I have started off the menu in the warm sunshine of spring in Sicily.
Then to Tuscany, for my recipe from the kitchens of Caterina de Medici, adapted from the original Renaissance recipe that uses milk soaked stale crumbled bread instead of ricotta. To Venice for the main course (or as we call it in Italy, the second course,) and another ancient recipe for a boned and rolled stuffed duck with a sweet and savoury filling and a classic, salty and intensely flavoured Peverada sauce.
Dessert keeps us in the north eastern regions of Friuli, for a cake studded with grappa soaked raisins. Soft and warm, this bright orange cake is guaranteed to lift your spirits, especially if finished off with a big spoonful of hot Zabaglione.
Come and join me at Rachel’s Kitchen on February 25th, when we shall create this whole menu together and sit down to enjoy it at the end of the lesson. The aim of my classes is that we all enjoy ourselves, and that you leave my classes feeling well fed and enriched in some way by the experience, having picked up useful cooking tips, learned something about authentic Italian cuisine and maybe even made some new like minded friends.
I look forward very much to seeing you there! Buon Appetito! Valentina
Date: 25th February 2014
Venue: Central Street Cookery School, EC1V
Cost: £95 including class, dinner and wine. Earlybird special £85 before 1st February
We'll be cooking in EC1V near Old Street. Full venue information will be sent once your booking is confirmed.
When & Where
With a degree in Theology and no culinary ability whatsoever, Rachel's passion for cooking started while on VSO in Zambia. Having never cooked before, she was forced to rethink her life in a village with no supermarket.
So, she started baking her own bread, making granita using lemons from her garden, and the rest, as they say, is history.
After graduating in Cuisine and Patisserie from Le Cordon Bleu, Rachel went on to work with some of London's most inspiring chefs at Galvin Bistro de Luxe in Baker Street, and Lanka Patisserie in Primrose Hill.
In June 2010 Rachel started Rachel’s Kitchen as a way to share her passion for great food using quality ingredients.
She has since taught thousands of people the confidence to create delicious dishes in the kitchen, and was delighted that Rachel's Kitchen was awarded a Tripadvisor Certificate of Excellence in 2016.
With her relaxed approach, fun teaching style and hearty flavours, Rachel has become the chef of choice for both private and corporate clients, and for brushing up on your cooking skills whilst smiling at the same time.