Well – balanced, simple, rooted in the soil, and yet refined – this describes the cuisine of Tuscany, yet in spite of the fact that the ingredients used are so modest and locally produce, no-one would describe Tuscan cuisine as boring. Tuscan region of Italy is famous among food gourmets for it’s bread baked without salt, Tuscan Olive Oil, pecorino Cheese, Florentine beefsteak and not to forget the famous Chianti Wines. Those who know me well are acquainted with my love for Italian food, whether it’s their bread, olive oil, pasta or risotto I enjoy every bit of it so when I got the opportunity to learn more about Tuscan Cuisine I could not resist and agreed to it.
Chef Antonello Cancedda, came all the way from JW Marriott Chandigarh, where he is Italian Chef De Cuisine, to share with us some of his Tuscan Cuisine specialties. A native of Sardinia, Italy and studied in Genoa, he is known for his passion for Italian food and attention to details, he strongly believes in retaining the authenticity despite the contemporary fashion of cooking, his day usually begins early in the morning with a tour to local farmers market to pick fresh produce for the day. Many Indian chefs also specialize in Italian Cuisine but what made this whole experience of Tuscan Cook Off with Chef Antonello, memorable was the way he shared his childhood food memories, stories about his local cuisine, the kind of food he likes and the way in a humble manner he sat down with us to have lunch.
He is been in India for quite sometime now and he has adapted Indian culture so well, he loves Butter Chicken and Biryani, plays Bollywood songs in his guitar, daily practices Yoga, learnt few words of Hindi as well and very well informed about the Indian culture.
Alba, the word is Scottish name for Scotland, is a specialty restaurant in JW Marriott, Bengaluru, serving Italian and Tuscan Cuisine, with an elegant ambiance the sitting arrangement revolves around beautifully countryside styled open kitchen which gives this whole place a amphitheater like dramatic look, making it perfect for a sophisticated Italian meal.
Afternoon started with preparing mise en place for the Italian classic dessert Tiramisu, Chef invited us all to join him in preparing and assembling Tiramisu, once the bowl of Tiramisu got settled in the fridge for chilling, Chef demonstrated how to make fresh Chianti Pappardelle from scratch, there is always something mesmerizing about the fresh pasta making, I can watch it for hours, then it was time to toss in fresh pasta in delicate sauce with some vegetables and for the final finishing a spoonful of pumpkin puree. But the show stopper of the day was Polla alla Diavolla, chicken in devil sauce, though the name sounds very theatrical but the dish was full of flavors, the chicken was tender and juicy, devil sauce made of mushrooms was robust and bursting with flavors. That afternoon was well spent in the company of Chef Antonello and with great food on plate.
The Tuscan food festival is going on until the 24th of August in Alba, JW Marriott, Bengaluru, and the festival offers an array of authentic Tuscan delicacies well crafted to suit everyone’s taste buds. So if you want to experience a gastronomic journey through Italian food then I am sure this Tuscan festival will be a great experience for you.
JW Marriott Hotel
Vittal Malya Road,
Bangalore – 560001