Getting back into cooking since 2009.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Six courses that are not KFC

Recently we cooked a multi-course dinner for three friends who have been known to subsist on pies from BP, honey sandwiches, KFC buckets, Doritos and the occasional Flying Taco burrito. Without wanting to suggest that any of these things are somehow less than worthy of culinary acclaim (I am a fan of the Flying Taco and honey sandwiches), I hope this meal was a bit of a change of pace.

First course was the chilled corn soup that I posted about previously. This time I double strained it, and the smoother texture is definitely preferable for a chilled soup. The chilli oil is nice, but it’s tough to get the right amount of kick in a couple of drops of oil without overdoing it and inducing coughing fits.

Second course was a beetroot, feta and apple salad with a beetroot chip, all made by Soda. I think she was unhappy with the results, possibly due to it being a bit dry? Still, it was a nice refreshing little second course.

Third course was ricotta gnudi with sage brown butter sauce, my personal favourite. I’ve been daydreaming about gnudi since eating them at the Spotted Pig a few months ago. They’re like gnocchi, but instead of potato and flour they’re made with ricotta, parmesan and a bit of semolina. You mould them into their little bullet shapes and then leave them to sit overnight immersed in semolina so that they develop a bit of a crust on the outside. When you cook them the crust holds them together but the inside is an oozy, rich delight.This recipe came from River CafĂ© Easy. One note to self: cook these in a couple of batches.

Fourth course was fillet steak, wrapped in bacon, basted with salsa verde and served with Locatelli’s broad bean puree. Self explanatory really. Incredibly tasty. Credit for this course has to go to the awesome butcher at Torre on Lake Street who cut from the middle of the fillet for me, so I could have nice round steaks to wrap in bacon.

Fifth course was walnut tuilles and honey-roasted pears (both made by Soda) and some brie. I cannot get enough of this flavour combination.

We finished with a Campari and agrum jelly topped with a pink grapefruit sorbet. I sometimes find the sour/sweet combination a bit hard to master with a citrus sorbet, but this worked pretty well with around 150ml fruit juice to 200ml simple syrup.


  1. man. all of those things were GOOD. not that i'm the one who lives on KFC and honey sandwiches.

  2. Re: Beetroot salad, yeah it was too dry and just kinda boring. Basically I had no ideas and it was a rush. The beet chips were the highlight but even they were a bit overdone (there should've been more but I could only salvage a few).

    Re: Walnut Tuilles & Pears - these were from Cuisine Magazine (December 08 maybe?), and are definitely winners, always.

    The rest of this meal was killer! Gnudi was great but that meat wrapped in bacon with the salsa verde.. almost made me feel sorry for vegetarians (but not really). 5 stars!!

  3. The gnudi and the cheese course were the highlights for me...

    The beef was good, and I'll definitely do it again, but I was a bit disappointed with my steak cookery. I turned the meat a few times and it overcooked slightly to be more medium than medium rare.

  4. Yes please A++ would eat again!
    That is for the gnudi as well as steaks.

  5. gnudi? OMGGGgg I would really like to attempt that! Also I wish Locatelli was my drunk italian restaurant owning uncle. I love that guy.