Author: raffaellacova

Fagottini cacio e pere

4/5 serves 150 gr. 00 flour 150 gr. durum wheat flour 150 gr eggs (3 medium eggs) 200 gr. sheep ricotta 250 gr. pear (I used 1 ripe williams) 80 gr. aged pecorino toscano cheese 3/4 walnuts 70 gr unsalted butter salt pepper For the filling divide the pear in 4 pieces. Save 1 for the sauce. Peel and core the other pieces and cut into tiny cubes. Grate the pecorino but save 1 little piece to shave on the plate before serving. Mix the pear with the ricotta and the grated pecorino. Season with salt and pepper and set aside. For the pasta place the flours on your working surface. Make a large well in the flour and put the eggs into it. When the dough is too stiff to work with a fork, start to work with your hands. Knead the dough for about 5 minutes until it becomes smooth and elastic. Form a ball and wrap it letting rest for about a half hour. Divide the dough into 4 pieces. Work with …

caffè in forchetta ( coffee pudding)

  2 free range eggs 2 yolks 4 tbs  granulated sugar 250 ml  whole milk 250 ml black coffee 250 ml cream 1 tbs icing sugar Preheat oven to 150° C (320° F). Beat the eggs and the yolks with granulated sugar. Add  the milk and the cold coffee, stir well and pour mixture through a sieve into individual ramekins. Put them in a baking pan with 1 cm of water for about 35′ until they get firm. let them cool completely and store in the fridge. Whisk the cream with the icing sugar.  Just before serving, unmold  the pudding on a plate and add some whipped cream, dust with ground coffee and serve.

beet root and feta salad

2 boiled beet roots 125 gr feta cheese 1/4 red onion 1cm ginger fresh or dried  mint leaves 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil Himalaya salt black pepper Cut the beet roots in slices of about 1 cm, crumble the feta cheese and add some mint leaves (dried or fresh). Mince the ginger and put on the salad, add the thinly sliced red onion and  season with  a pinch of himalaya salt, extra virgin olive oil and  black pepper.

Whole grain rigatoncini with kale and mature Tuscan pecorino

280g  whole grain rigatoncini  or other tubular pasta 6 tbsp olive oil 1 red chili, finely sliced (seeds in or out – it’s up to you) 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped 200g young kale, shredded half onion, finely chopped 50g mature Tuscan pecorino, half finely grated, half shaved Wash the kale and boil it until tender, drain it and keep the water to cook the pasta. While it’s cooking, heat half the oil in a saucepan, then sizzle the chili, garlic and onion. Add the kale and fry for few minutes. Drain the pasta, reserving a few tbsp water, then toss the pasta and water through the kale, adding the rest of the olive oil and the grated pecorino. Serve scattered with Tuscan pecorino shavings.  

cooking classes

The Italian kitchen is work and meeting place in one. Conversations around the kitchen table may start with neighborhood gossip and move to politics, but they eventually all come back to the one argument dearest to every Italian: food. Raffaella’s recipes have been passed on in the homes of friends and relatives or picked up during a chat at the food market or with the local butcher; some are foolproof, others are small gourmet adventures and most of them – think pizza or pasta making – are fun to try out with kids too. Based in the Val d’Orcia, the cooking classes are Tuscan at heart, but anything from pizza to risotto can be included for a trip through Italy’s culinary ABC. The lessons are held in English in the kitchen of your holiday rental in southern Tuscany or at Raffaella’s beautiful historic home in the countryside near Montalcino.

picnic & parties

Celebrating an anniversary, wedding or just want to throw a party without a reason? Raffaella’s catering services are available in Val d’Orcia and southern Tuscany. She’ll even be able to suggest the perfect event location if you haven’t found it yet. Going for a walk or planning an impromptu lunch in a Brunello vineyard? Picnic baskets can be prepared for small groups from two to ten.

menu / ingredients

Cooking classes and catering services are tailor-made according to the time of the year and clients’ dietary needs. Pasta is homemade and all proposed dishes are freshly prepared. Whatever the recipe, the starting point lies in the best available raw ingredients – all of them locally sourced for your gourmet tour through the finest scents and tastes of Tuscan cooking. Gluten or lactose free recipes and a vegetarian or vegan menu for cooking classes and catering services can be put together on request.