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Antonio Carluccio webchat, Weds 7 May, midday to 1pm.

(77 Posts)
RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 01-May-14 13:57:25

On Weds (7 May) we're welcoming Antonio Carluccio to Mumsnet HQ at midday for a webchat. The undisputed godfather of Italian food, Carluccio has just published his latest and 18th cookery book, Antonio Carluccio's Pasta.

Antonio has lived in London since 1975 where he moved to set up and run the Neal Street restaurant and later his successful chain of Carluccio's restaurants. In 1998 he was awarded the title of Commendatore by decree of the President of italy for his knowledge and enthusiasm and lifetime's service to the Italian food industry and in 2007 was awarded an OBE.

Carluccio says of his latest book ?The most important thing that I would like to give you all is a taste of the experience, love and passion I possess, which will help to make it easy for you to reproduce some of these pasta dishes for yourself. I won?t be upset if, in some cases, you may use more or less of my suggested ingredients. I would, however, be a little ?hurt? if you added garlic and oregano to a Bolognese sauce.?

Come and join Antonio and find out why he's upset by the thought of garlic in bolognese sauce on Wednesday at midday or if you're unable to join us then, post a question in advance on this thread. Everyone who joins will be entered into a draw to win a signed copy of his latest book. You can also try a couple of Carluccio's pasta recipes from the new book here.

Esperanzadetriana Wed 07-May-14 11:46:58

Hi Antonio, another big fan here and I am looking forward to getting a copy of your new book. I love italian food but I'd love to experiment a bit more. At the moment I do lots of baked pasta dishes and enjoy cooking risotto but would love to use polenta and gnocchi. Can you suggest a couple of dishes to get me started - do you prefer to make gnocchi from potatoes or flour and eggs?

Allalonenow Wed 07-May-14 12:04:20

Buongiorno Antonio!
I love your books because they have such contagious enthusiasm.
I wonder if you have a favourite Italian wine, one that is available in England?
I'm going to have a little glass of limoncello now, to get into the Italian mood.

RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 07-May-14 12:08:58

Antonio is in the building. Alicemumsnet is nervously serving up coffee (what pressure) and Antonio has just been giving us tips on how to make tiramisu. We're very very excited that he's going to be giving us more tips over the next hour. Welcome to mumsnet Antonio.

Jungfraujoch Wed 07-May-14 12:11:03

Hello Mr Carluccio

Another fan here of your restaurants!

I've never made my own pasta but fancy giving it a go! Do you have a fail safe recipe and do I need a pasta machine?

Thank you - and hope the ladies are sharing the biscuits!!

RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 07-May-14 12:11:12

LaundryLegoLunch

I don't have a question I can think of at the moment but I have to say Carluccios is one of my favourite restaurants in the world.

Great food for me and the kids and always so, so welcoming to children. In the last 7 years I have averaged a visit at least once a fortnight. I wish the Carluccios ethos regarding staff attitude and food quality could extend to more chains.

Can you tell I love Carluccios grin

Well done, you're an intelligent person! smile

RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 07-May-14 12:13:40

LeonardoAcropolis

Hi Antonio

We love risotto here, more importantly, my fussy little boys love it grin

Because I usually haven't got time to stir the stock in slowly I usually put it in the pan in one go and bake the risotto in the oven. Is there a massive difference between oven baked risotto and risotto cooked 'properly'? Also, what's your favourite risotto?

The favourite risotto is porcini risotto. And oven-baked risotto (pilaf) is not as good as risotto in the pan in my opinion - risotto needs to be stirred to exude a bit of starch!

LeonardoAcropolis Wed 07-May-14 12:21:56

Thank you for answering my question x I will promise to devote more time to cooking a risotto on the stove.

Another question, if I may? Wilk we be seeing you on television again sometime soon?

AntonioCarluccio Wed 07-May-14 12:22:32

IHaveBrilloHair

Hi Antonio, lovely to see you on MN.
I consider myself a good home cook, but am terrible with anything involving flour, is it really worth me making my own pasta, (with all the swearing that will involve), on occasion, or should I just continue to buy it?

Btw, you probably wouldn't approve, but I made the most amazing ragu with brisket last week <grin>

Yes, yes, yes! Without swearing, you take 100g flour and one egg for an abundant portion (00 flour is best for pasta - available in supermarkets). Then you mix to obtain a fairly compact dough and then either use a rolling pin or a small pasta machine to press it together and flatten it. Then you cut it in your desired shape and boil it very briefly in slightly-salted water (10g salt/ litre water - this ratio is important! Otherwise it will taste of nothing.) And then add the sauce of your choice!

Well done on the ragu - good choice. Provided you didn't put any garlic or herbs in the pasta...

AntonioCarluccio Wed 07-May-14 12:23:37

IHaveBrilloHair

Hi Antonio, lovely to see you on MN.
I consider myself a good home cook, but am terrible with anything involving flour, is it really worth me making my own pasta, (with all the swearing that will involve), on occasion, or should I just continue to buy it?

Btw, you probably wouldn't approve, but I made the most amazing ragu with brisket last week <grin>

Yes, yes, yes! Without swearing, you take 100g flour and one egg for an abundant portion (00 flour is best for pasta - available in supermarkets). Then you mix to obtain a fairly compact dough and then either use a rolling pin or a small pasta machine to press it together and flatten it. Then you cut it in your desired shape and boil it very briefly in slightly-salted water (10g salt/ litre water - this ratio is important! Otherwise it will taste of nothing.) And then add the sauce of your choice!

Well done on the ragu - good choice. Provided you didn't put any garlic or herbs in the pasta...

LeonardoAcropolis

Hi Antonio

We love risotto here, more importantly, my fussy little boys love it grin

Because I usually haven't got time to stir the stock in slowly I usually put it in the pan in one go and bake the risotto in the oven. Is there a massive difference between oven baked risotto and risotto cooked 'properly'? Also, what's your favourite risotto?

The favourite risotto is porcini risotto. And oven-baked risotto (pilaf) is not as good as risotto in the pan in my opinion - risotto needs to be stirred to exude a bit of starch!

iseenodust Wed 07-May-14 12:23:42

Love Antonio when he's on Saturday kitchen.

We love fresh figs but not dried ones. What fab dessert would you make with fresh figs? Sorry no pastry allowed.

AntonioCarluccio Wed 07-May-14 12:25:13

Allalonenow

Buongiorno Antonio!
I love your books because they have such contagious enthusiasm.
I wonder if you have a favourite Italian wine, one that is available in England?
I'm going to have a little glass of limoncello now, to get into the Italian mood.

There are two wines - one is the dessert wine which I grew up with called Moscato D'Asti which is sweet, sparkling and not too alcoholic. And another one is Barberra which is available here, it comes from Piemont and is a lovely general wine.

Chin chin for your Limoncello (which in Japanese means 'little willy' - I found that out the hard way when I was in Japan!).

AntonioCarluccio Wed 07-May-14 12:26:54

iseenodust

Love Antonio when he's on Saturday kitchen.

We love fresh figs but not dried ones. What fab dessert would you make with fresh figs? Sorry no pastry allowed.

I have a recipe of baked fresh figs which are peeled with a little sugar and sherry on top, baked in the oven. You can add cream if you like!

But I seldom find a ripe fig here - if you really want a bit of moisture, in the South of Italy, when figs are ripe they have honey dripping from the bottom. They are delicious.

iseenodust Wed 07-May-14 12:27:13

I really want spaghetti vongole for dinner now but I've got a chicken in the fridge. Not a second question just sharing my dilemma. grin

iseenodust Wed 07-May-14 12:28:32

Oooh that sounds lovely, thank you. Acquired the taste on Sardinia.

AntonioCarluccio Wed 07-May-14 12:29:23

Mignonette

Hello Mr Carluccio -

My daughter is training to be a Patissiere. What advice would you give her for her training and career? What would you say to your younger self?

Love your recipes, use them often and have bought ALL your books. I am an inveterate food writing collector and yours look mighty fine and stand book spine to spine with the other great Italian food writers- Anna Del Conte, Valentina Harris, Giorgio Locatelli, Pellugrino Artusi, Cesare Casella and Marcella Hazan.

Thank you.

I am not a patisserie specialist myself, preferring recipes where I can create instantly and bakery needs exact recipes. But, I gather that with bakery there is a great deal of satisfaction, so I would tell her - 'Continue, make me good profiteroles!'.

The only biscuit I created myself was polenta biscuit which I adore - take polenta and mix with butter and eggs and lemon peel and pop on grease-proof paper and put in the oven until they are dry and crumbly.

AntonioCarluccio Wed 07-May-14 12:30:18

JazzAnnNonMouse

Such family friendly staff at your restaurants.

My question: Italian chef on tv said that real Italians don't use onion and garlic together as they clash, is this true?!

This chef must be an idiot! I don't know who you mean, but he's an idiot. You can use garlic and onion together - of course!

NormaStanleyFletcher Wed 07-May-14 12:31:35

What is our favourite vegetarian recipe? I am trying to persuade my husband that a meal does not always have to include meat.

NormaStanleyFletcher Wed 07-May-14 12:33:03

But no garlic in bolognaise?

Mignonette Wed 07-May-14 12:33:07

Thanks so much for answering my question and my daughter makes amazing Profiteroles. I am sure she'd be most delighted to make you some! She makes lovely Cassatta too.

AntonioCarluccio Wed 07-May-14 12:34:12

[quote EduCated]Ooh, hello. DP would like to know the secret to a really good, but simple, tomato sauce for pasta? We can never get the right flavour, and he's vegetarian, so my 'just chuck some bacon in' method doesn't work any more blush

mousmous

I will be stuck at work sad

my question is about soffritAlso the vege anti pasti is awesome.

Sofritto is usually a preparation base for other things. To make any meat brown, do not put a large chunk it in a pan as it exudes water and boil. And don't add salt as it also releases water. So always cook small quantities separately. to, when I make it, it doesn't brown and is rather soggy. still tastes ok, just not as rich as I would like. maybe I'm too impatient?

Always add salt at the end.

IHaveBrilloHair Wed 07-May-14 12:35:41

Thank you for answering, I will definitely have a go at making pasta.

Allalonenow Wed 07-May-14 12:36:25

Salve Antonio,
I'll certainly try those wines!
I'm a fan of anything sparkling, always have prosecco in the fridge, love it with a splosh of Campari!
grin about chin chin, I'll be more careful where I say it grin

Ciao

DayZ Wed 07-May-14 12:39:04

Hello Antonio

My fathers family come from southern Italy (Ravello) and we all adore your recipes and tv programmes. May I ask which part of Italy you come from, and whether you think any particular area produces the best food? crosses fingers you say the Amalfi coast

This webchat is making my mouth water, I have plans for some Gnocchi making this weekend to satisfy my appetite!

Thank you.

AntonioCarluccio Wed 07-May-14 12:39:34

LadySybilLikesCake

I've read about the issues that you've had with depression, and I just wanted to say that I think you're amazing smile

I'd like to teach my 15 year old son how to cook 'properly' (no burgers and chips here). What sorts of things were you cooking at 15 and can you recommend something easy for him to start off with?

You're welcome here for some brew or a glass of wine too. I'm in Nottingham if you're ever passing (there's a lovely branch of Carluccio's here. The staff are wonderful).

Thank you.

Try the tiramisu - it is simple (without alcohol, as he's 15;)).

The easiest pasta Aglio olio e peperoncino (garlic oil and chilli). This is the simplest and declared in Italy the sexiest recipe (he's 15 - he can begin!). It takes 7-8 minutes to prepare, whist your pasta is cooking you put a little garlic in a pan with a little olive oil and the desired amount of chilli - don't let the garlic go brown. This will take a minute. Then you add the pasta to the pan and sauté and EAT. I also like to add a couple of anchovies which add a lovely salty seafood flavour.

By the way, pizza with pepperoni is the most hideous thing - it doesn't exist in Italy!

AntonioCarluccio Wed 07-May-14 12:41:59

NormaStanleyFletcher

What is our favourite vegetarian recipe? I am trying to persuade my husband that a meal does not always have to include meat.

The one that I cooked for Carluccio's which has generated almost £1 million for action against hunger. It is a large penne with courgette sauce and little spinach balls.

RachelMumsnet: We have this recipe on site!

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