My friend Adam Glawe asked me to help him prepare a Northern Italian meal for a small group of ten. We split the duties, each of us taking half the meal. I prepared the Antipasto, which was a charcuterie board. To add to our challenges, since part of the group was Gluten free, we made a completely gluten-free meal.
We did serve with Gluten free crackers. And they tasted pretty good.
I made Asparagus & Basil Risotto. It was the first time I had made Risotto on the stove top in quite some time. I usually do it in the microwave, which is so much easier and less time consuming. And it tastes just the same. Here is a link to my previous post about Microwave Risotto – Microwave Risotto
Adam prepared Stracotto al Chianti (Beef Braised in Chianti)
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 pounds stewing beef, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 2 red onions, roughly chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, crushed
- 3 cups Chianti wine
- 2 teaspoons whole peppercorns
Directions for Stracotto al Chianti
- In a stew pot, heat up the extra-virgin olive oil.
- Once the oil is hot, add the beef, onions and garlic.
- Sear for about 2 minutes, stirring frequently.
- Add all of the wine. It should be enough to cover the beef.
- Season with salt and whole peppercorns.
- Bring the wine to a boil.
- Lower the heat and allow it to gently simmer for approximately 2 hours.
We finished with a sublime Panna Cota.
- 1/4 cup cold water or milk
- 2 1/4 teaspoons unflavored powdered gelatin*
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Place water in a small bowl and sprinkle gelatin over the surface in a single layer. Be sure not to pile it as that will prevent the crystals from dissolving properly.
- Let stand for 5-10 minutes to soften.
- Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, heat cream, sugar, vanilla pod, and vanilla seeds on medium heat and bring just to a boil until sugar dissolves.
- Remove from heat and stir in gelatin and immediately whisk until smooth and dissolved. If the gelatin hasn’t fully dissolved, return the saucepan to the stove and heat gently over low heat. Stir constantly and don’t let the mixture boil.
- Pour cream into 4 individual serving dishes.
- Refrigerate for at least 2-4 hours, or until completely set.
- If you like, top with fresh fruit, berries, berry sauce, or lemon curd.
Lots of Italian wine pairings, Italian after dinner drinks, Perroni birra, just a fabulous meal and fun time cooking again in someone else’s kitchen.
If you like this video try our easy to make Eggplant Parmesan