So it’s about time I post something, eh? No to say that I have had a drought of inspiration. More like I am too lazy to write down formal recipes, ingredients and measurements. Some say cooking is chemistry but for me cooking is like going back to kindergarten and having an arts and crafts class in the kitchen: no limits and no restrictions to bound my culinary exploration. Play, create, eat! Hopefully it ends up looking good and tasting delicious.
This post pretty much illustrates my take on food creation: I have one specific ingredient in mind that I want to ‘showcase’. Today that ingredient is bocconcini! It’s pronounced like ‘bacon’+’genie’ only replace the “aye” sound with an “o” sounds and the “g” with “tchi”. Did that make sense? Hmm ok now try saying “bacon genie” with something really hot in your mouth? Got it? Good.
I noticed that I had only seen this fresh soft cheese served in salads, the typical one being tomatoe+basil+cucumber+bocconcini. It’s finally summer which in the kitchen means several things, one of them being fresh fruity salads. Mangoes being particularly succulent this time of year, I decided to revamp the old bocconcini salad and replacing cucumber with mango cubes. A little bit of extra lemon juice enhances the acidic juice from the tomato and the sweet pulp from the mango. Ground some pepper on the top, et voilà!
I should probably explain how I came up with this unusual combination. I have a book called “La bible des saveurs” which translates too “The bible of flavours”. It’s like the dictionary of ingredients: look up any basic cooking element from Almond to Zucchini and it will tell you how best to cook it, combine it, and savour it. The diagram above shows most ingredients you can combine with mango and bocconcini. The boxed ingredients are the ones which the two have in common! I call this method “Succulent Ingredient Networking” or “SIN in the Kitchen”.
Cheese in salads are a wonderful thing but they don’t even come close to exploiting this fatty ingredient. Out came the pasta box, the butter, the garlic, the parsley and the pesto for what became a refreshing pasta dish. If I had to name my art work it would be called “cheese eggs in a nest”. (I promise next time I’ll make the pesto from scratch. With my own garden basil too.)
The result? The bocconcini pearls had a lot more flavor in this dish and added some interesting texture.
Recipes sound even more delicious when they are explained to you in person so if you want any specifications, send me a message!