Sauerkraut and Potato Mash with Smoked Pork Sausage (Zuurkoolstamppot met rookworst)

Dutch cuisine is not known for its finesse, but more for hearty dishes like stamppot, potatoes and vegetables mashed together. One of the classic winter dishes is zuurkoolstamppot met rookworst, sauerkraut mashed with potatoes and served with smoked pork sausage. … Continue reading Sauerkraut and Potato Mash with Smoked Pork Sausage (Zuurkoolstamppot met rookworst)

Potato Gnocchi with Venison and Chanterelles (Gnocchi di Patate al Ragù di Cervo e Finferli)

There are different ways of cooking the potatoes to make gnocchi. You can cook the potatoes sous-vide, or roast the potatoes in the oven. In this post I show that you can also simply boil the potatoes. I should probably do a … Continue reading Potato Gnocchi with Venison and Chanterelles (Gnocchi di Patate al Ragù di Cervo e Finferli)

Gnocchi with Walnut Sauce (Gnocchi in Salsa di Noci)

Mimi’s post about gnocchi in a walnut cream sauce inspired me to try my own version. Instead of a sauce with cream, I made the classic Ligurian walnut sauce with milk, day-old bread, garlic, marjoram, and olive oil. The sauce has a nice full walnut flavor that works very well with the sweetness of the potato gnocchi. Thanks for the idea, Mimi!  Continue reading “Gnocchi with Walnut Sauce (Gnocchi in Salsa di Noci)”

Gnocchi alla Sorrentina

Home made potato gnocchi made from scratch are the best! They are so much better than chewy store-bought ones. I’ve only posted about potato gnocchi once before: gnocchi with gorgonzola was the first recipe I ever posted on this blog. The city of Sorrento is near the island of Capri, the island that gave its name to the famous Insalata Caprese with tomato, mozzarella, and basil. You can think fo Gnocchi alla Sorrentina as the gnocchi version of this salad, because the gnocchi are dressed with fresh tomato sauce, mozzarella, basil, and parmigiano reggiano. This combination is always a winner, and it is even more so with feathery light homemade potato gnocchi.
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Smoked Halibut ‘Pizza’

The following I dish I prepared for the Sicilian dinner was very loosely based upon one of the appetizers at La Madia, the best restaurant in Sicily with two Michelin stars.

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The ‘pizza’ at La Madia

This is what I wrote about this dish in my review of our dinner at La Madia: “We were thoroughly fooled by this pizza, because we were wondering how we were going to survive 8 courses if they were all going to be this big. It turned out to be very light actually. What looks like melted mozzarella is actually potato mousse. The crust was only a very crispy very thin round of dough, and underneath the ‘cheese’ there was lovely cod smoked on pine wood and some semi-dried tomato. Great flavors and wonderful presentation. 10/10”

The dish I prepared is by no means an attempt at recreating chef Pino Cuttaia’s dish, but it has been heavily inspired by it. My ‘pizza’ was made with hot-smoked halibut, potato mousse, and semi-dried tomatoes. It was more substantial than at La Madia and I served it as a main course. Continue reading “Smoked Halibut ‘Pizza’”

Trenette alla Genovese

Each region of Italy has its own pasta dishes. The most famous foodstuff from Liguria is pesto, and the two typical pasta dishes from Liguria with pesto are Lasagne alla Genovese and Trenette alla Genovese. Both are best with pesto made from scratch using pestle and mortar. Trenette alla Genovese are trenette cooked with haricots verts and potatoes, and served with pesto alla genovese. Continue reading “Trenette alla Genovese”

Roasted Potato Experiment #1: Salting Before or After?

We eat pasta and rice much more often than potatoes, but when we do eat potatoes we most often eat them roasted. This preparation brings out the taste of the potatoes themselves and gives them a nice crispy crust without using a lot of oil. There are many variables you can change when making roasted potatoes: oven temperature, salting before or after, waxy or floury potatoes, etc. I decided to do a series of experiments to find the optimal recipe. This first installment is about salt: is it better to salt the potatoes before or after roasting? Instinctively I have … Continue reading Roasted Potato Experiment #1: Salting Before or After?

Home-made Belgian Fries

Belgian Fries (known as “Vlaamse friet” or simply “patat” in the Netherlands) are very popular in both Belgium and the Netherlands. The main difference with French fries is that they are thicker. Belgian fries should be freshly cut, fried twice, fluffy on the inside, crispy on the ouside, have a distinct potato taste, and are 1 cm (1/2 inch) thick. Belgian fries are usually served in a paper cone when you buy them from a street vendor, but at home I just serve them on a plate. For the best taste, real Belgian fries must be fried in beef tallow … Continue reading Home-made Belgian Fries