Master Italian Cooking at Home With These Top Tips from Carluccio’s November 2, 2020

by Hattie Limited Edition Recipes
We’ve teamed up with everyone’s favourite Italian, Carluccio’s, to show the nation how simple it can be to cook restaurant quality dishes at home. That’s why, for this week only, you can order everything you need to create one of the most-loved Carluccio’s recipe, Chicken Saltimbocca with Italian Style Roast Potatoes and Asparagus, pre-portioned and delivered in your HelloFresh box. Buon Appetito!
Having worked for the Carluccio’s brand for most of his career AND with Mr Carluccio’s himself, Eric Chauvet, Executive Chef at Carluccio’s, knows a thing or two about mastering Italian cooking. We quizzed Eric on three fundamentals of Italian cooking; cooking pasta, nailing a sauce and how to get the most out of your basics – because what makes Italian food so delicious is using simple ingredients to create heavenly flavours.

First, pasta. Here’s what you need to know.

1. You must make sure the water is boiling before you start your pasta. Adding pasta to cold or luke-warm water will ruin it’s end consistency.
2. Next, salt (and generously), but only after it’s boiling and before you add the pasta. It’s true that it adds flavour, but did you know that it also helps the texture?⠀
3. Find that you always make enough pasta to feed a small village? Measuring out your pasta beforehand will reduce your chances of wasting food. And here at HelloFresh, we’re all about tackling food waste! Eric says a simple trick is to measure out between 100-125g for the perfect portion.
4. Finally, combine the sauce with the pasta while still on the heat – don’t add both separately on your plate. A little pasta water can help here as the starch will help evenly coat the pasta in sauce.⠀
Hungry? Head to our website to check out our limited edition Chicken Saltimbocca recipe.

Next up, nailing an Italian sauce!

1. It’s all about contrasting flavours. If you want your pasta sauce to really pop, think about how to up the contrast of your flavours. If you’re cooking a tomato-based dish, for example, Eric suggests adding capers or olives or a dash of balsamic vinegar. The sharp flavour cuts through the sweetness of the tomato just perfectly.
2. Add in a pinch of sugar. No need for measurements here, you simply need the amount of sugar you can pinch between your fingers. This will lift a tomato pasta sauce from acidic to just right.
3. Let it simmer. Leaving your sauce to simmer allows the flavours to develop nicely.
4. Never underestimate the power of fresh herbs – they bring such freshness to a dish!

Finally, basics…

1. Invest in a good olive oil – and don’t be afraid to use a generous amount when cooking! A good glug over a finished pasta dish will elevate those flavours. YUM.
2. Garlic, onion, chopped tomatoes and fresh basil is a fool-proof pasta sauce that will taste delicious every time.
And there you have it! Italian cooking, made easy, thanks to HelloFresh and Carluccio’s.
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