To celebrate Grana Padano week, Davide Oldani of michelin starred Restaurant D’O in Milan has teamed up with Francesco Mazzei of L’Anima in London. They are cooking a special menu featuring the three ages of grana padano cheese until just the 12th of July (which is tomorrow! Be quick).
Davide’s cooking is strictly seasonal, using simple and what were once regarded as peasant ingredients, which he raises to new heights. Francesco’s cooking is terrific, informed by his native Calabria, it is one of the finest Italian restaurants in London, so you shouldn’t need much of an excuse to get down there.
Not all of you are in London, so I am going to share one of Francesco’s terrific recipes with you too for Nutmeg & Grana Padano Cheese Puffs. They are super light and very cheesy (of course). The sweet nuttiness and richness of the mature grana padano is terrific in these. I think perfect for a Friday night at home in front of the TV with a glass (or two) of red wine.
RECIPE: Grana Padano and Nutmeg Cheese Puffs
Makes 100 (small) pieces (you may want to reduce it if you live alone!)
200g Unsalted butter
9g Salt (a generous pinch, if you don’t have a scale that measures this precisely, add to taste)
120g Grated Grana Padano, aged for 20 Months
2g Nutmeg (if you don’t have a scale that measures this precisely, just grate it fresh to taste)
Put the milk, butter, and salt into a pan.
Bring to boil until the butter is melted.
Add the flour and stir using a wooden spoon on a low heat until the mixture doesn’t stick on the bottom of the pan.
Add the Grana Padano and stir for one more minute. Remove from heat. Put the mixture into a mixing bowl and add the eggs (one by one) until the mixture is nice and smooth. Add the black pepper and nutmeg to taste. Let the mixture cool and form the dough into small round parcels.
Fry the parcels in hot sunflower oil (160/165°C) until they become golden in colour.
Dust with Grana Padano Cheese and serve.
Disclosure: I dined as a guest of grana padano, however, I have eaten at L’Anima many times, and wholeheartedly recommend it. Francesco is a terrific chef, I really don’t understand why Michelin have overlooked him.