Yesterday, I was lucky enough to be invited to attend a culinary masterclass by Chef Giuseppe Lioce who is the Italian Chef at The Westin Pune Koregaon Park. Even the rain gods, who have suddenly decided to wake from their slumber, showering huge amounts of rain down, turning gurgaon roads into rivers and lakes, couldn't keep me away :)
The masterclass was all about teaching us how to prepare simple and authentic Southern Italian food. These culinary masterclasses, held regularly by Westin, are such a great way to learn about your favorite cuisine as well as interact with chefs who are experts in their fields. Chef Giuseppe, who is from Bari in the South of Italy, explained to us the difference between Northern and Southern Italian cooking. While the food from the North of Italy is richer, using cream and butter, Southern Italian cuisine has a lot of mediterranean influences. He underscored his point by telling us how his own mother would throw a royal fit if he ever added butter to his preparations! While showing us how to prepare some simple dishes like Broccoli Calabresi (Broccoli fritters) to Cavatelli Pugliesi (semolina eggless pasta with a delicious tomato mushroom sauce), he regaled us with funny anecdotes about traditional Italian food and Italians passion for their food.
After watching chef Giuseppe prepare these dishes, we sat down together and got a chance to savour the food! Everything we learned was part of a special promotional menu starting from 8th July -18th July. So if you enjoy a taste of authentic Italian food, stop by at The Westin Gurgaon before 18th July.
Here are some images of what we learned and then enjoyed! They are all on the promotional menu, along with a host of other delicious options.
The process of making this semolina pasta reminds me of the
traditional Goan kul kul making process
These Broccoli Calabresi or Broccoli fritters are traditionally served as
an insalata and usually enjoyed with a cold glass of beer :) I guess some things
never change... beer and fried things will always be a winning combination
The Cavatelli Pugliesi was so simple and so delicious. A bowl of pasta
that warms the soul
This is the Branzino Livornese- oven baked sea bass served with a
polenta cake, sauteed spinach and a delicious olive, tomato and caper sauce
This is one of Chef Giuseppe's signature desserts- The Millefoglie is a
warm puff pastry layered with Italian custard, blueberry and vanilla ice cream
[All images are by Shalini Pereira. Please do not use without prior written permission]