Tuesday 5 February 2008

Pure simplicity!!

Good food is easy. That's what this blog is about. Sometimes I have to remember it's not about the larks vomit and the foie gras and the truffles, NOT that I can afford any of those things, but this past weekend, after a serious overindulgence in bacon, cheese and a pork vindaloo made from first principles, I needed to remind myself that simple pleasures are often the best.

Sunday nights are hard for us, we've usually come home from Chez Fur, so Sunday is spent tiding up, packing up the fridge, remembering to take out the rubbish and driving for an hour plus in peak hour high summer tourist traffic.

By the time we get back to GW and reverse the process, we're pretty much knackered.

So this Sunday past, I opted for simplicity.

Take a pasta of your choice. Just make sure it's a good one. This dish needs the pasta to be the star, not the sauce. I used Barilla spiralli. I don't know what it is about Barilla pasta, whether it's the ratio of durum wheat. the quality of said wheat or what, but I think it's the best pre-made pasta in Oz.

I cooked it in 5 litres of salted water for 8 mins, turned off the heat and let it sit for a further 2 before straining.

Straight back in the pan and add a goodly slurp of the best olive oil you have. I used the very last (**insert sobbing**) of my Main Creek Grove Premium Extra Virgin.. but the upside is that now I have an excuse to go back and get some more, right??

Main Creek Grove is at Main Ridge where the olive trees thrive in the cool climate of Victoria?s Mornington Peninsula. There are 1100 trees - a mix of the Tuscan varieties of Frantoio, Leccino and Pendolino. The Grove is managed on sustainable horticultural principles.The single estate oil has a smooth, fresh taste with hints of rocket like spicyness and a peppery finish. In 2007 the Frantoio oil won a Gold Medal that the Australian Olive Association annual awards. Main Creek Extra Virgin Olive Oil is ideally suited for all cooking needs, drizzling on pasta and vegetables as well as a simple dip for bread. Main Creek Grove Premium Blend is available in 250ml, 500ml and 1 litre bottles and in 1 and 3 litre cans.

Main Creek Grove

247 Main Creek Road
Main Ridge VIC 3929

Phone: 03 5989 6665
Email: vicky.davison@bigpond.com

A quick grate of my long-matured Red Hill favourite,

Creamy, Semi-matured or Aged

Farmhouse style goat cheese

Created from 100% free-range goat milk
Vegetarian rennet

Red Hill Cheese - Sensation

Traditional, natural rind

Sensation is a unique, farmhouse-style goat cheese. A slow make technique develops a fine, close texture with a creamy, luscious mouthfeel. The barrel-shaped body is covered in a wrinkled, mottled white rind. The flavour is distinctively different - a balance between sweet and sour, and long on the palate. Melts in the mouth. The aroma is of the farm, reminiscent of freshly-cut grass.

Sensation can be enjoyed at any stage, from fresh (3-5 days), to creamy (14 days) to semi-matured (3-4 weeks) to aged (2-3 months), when it develops a waxy-smooth, drier texture with concentrated salty flavours.

Sensation has amazing characteristics, controlled by the rind flora, which allow it to mature gracefully into a parmesan-style grating cheese. The moulds slowly draw moisture out of the cheese. This moisture should be allowed to escape unless you are looking for a more pungent cheese. Hence, Sensation is wrapped in waxed paper.

Allow the residual heat of the gas burner to slowly melt and meld the olive oil and the cheese. Do not allow the olive oil to heat to the point of sizzling. You just want it to melt the cheese and combine into cheesy, oily goodness.

Plate up and sprinkle with dried chilli flakes, sea salt and dried parsley.



grocer said...

good one PG

Jazz said...

Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.... Someone once told me the best pasta dishes never haver more than 3 or 4 ingredients.