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Stefano's Favourites


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Chef Paganini's tips, with a selection of dishes that will delight your guests.

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Chef Paganini's tips, with a selection of dishes that will delight your guests.


Piemontese Rabbit

A tasty starter and a great classic in Piemontese cuisine. It’s also known as ‘rabbit tuna,’ because it's prepared in a very similar way to tuna in oil. The meat, which is very easy to digest, is low-fat with a low cholesterol level, but rich in proteins, and is diced, boiled, and then marinated in a glass jar with oil and herbs. This seasoned and delicate dish, enhanced with garlic, spices, white onions, carrots and celery, is particularly good to serve as a starter.

According to legend, it was invented in the 19th century: at the time, there was a rule imposing fasting during Lent and meat was forbidden. To get around this rule, the monks of a monastery in Avigliana, near Turin, devised this recipe so that rabbit meat could be mistaken for tuna.

BECOME A CHEF: Take the glass jar from the fridge and leave it to rest for 15 minutes at room temperature. Then open the jar and drain the oil, but keep some to pour on the rabbit for flavour. After draining the rabbit, put in the centre of a serving dish using a round mould. Top it with some fresh salad (about 10 g per portion), 4 g of sprouted seeds, and a teaspoon of toasted sesame seeds (1-2 g); dress only with 0.5 g of salt and a spoonful of extra virgin olive oil (about 6 g). When you're satisfied and your dish looks appetising enough, drizzle over a bit of the remaining oil from the jar, and then serve.

Ravioli al Plin Filled with Roast with Ragù Sauce

Preparing these ravioli is a long and laborious process, that today is a symbol of the Langhe identity and the result of a centuries-long history. Ravioli al plin were invented to preserve roasted meat inside a thin layer of dough. The filling was put on the dough, which was then rolled to cover it, and the two sides were closed with a plin (i.e. pinch). Only the prime meat was selected for the filling, which in the Langhe included pork, rabbit, and veal. This tasty first course, according to an old and amusing custom, was served without sauce. If you want to enjoy their full essence, you can serve them with a cup of hot broth on the side. Otherwise, you can serve with butter and sage or with ragù, a meat-based sauce made with pork and veal meat, which brings out the flavour of ravioli al plin even more.

BECOME A CHEF! Take a large pot (at least 20 cm in height, 25 cm in diameter) and fill with 2 L of water and 30 g of coarse seasalt, then boil. Meanwhile, open the ragù sauce jar and pour into a pan (25 cm in diameter). Re-fill the jar with 30 g of broth or water, in order to flush out all the ragù, and pour into the pan as well. Then heat slowly, until the sauce is boiling. Once the sauce is hot, turn off the heat and add 30 g of butter, so that it can melt slowly, helping to thicken the ragù. When the water is boiling, put in the ravioli al plin and let them cook for two minutes after the water is boiling again. Then drain with the help of a skimmer and add to the pan with the ragù sauce. Sprinkle the ravioli with 20 g of grated Parmigiano Reggiano or Grana Padano cheese, and sauté. If the ravioli are too dry because the sauce was heated too much, add 30 ml of cooking water and sauté until they are well blended with the sauce. Lay the ravioli in a soup bowl with a spoon and... enjoy!

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