A few weeks back Eileen
contacted me via InstagramInstagram
because she was working on a food photography documentary and was wondering if I’d like to participate. I was intrigued. I proposed that we meet for coffee so that she could tell me a little more about her project and get to know her a little.
A few days later we met up for breakfast at a cool little café called Mokonuts
. She told me she was making a documentary about how people connect through food. She was contacting strangers that were in some way or another related to food, via social networks. Eileen asked if I would be open to cook for her at my home and tell her my story of how I came to be in the food world and in Paris. She would be taking photos of the whole thing, me cooking, talking, plating, eating.
I thought it was an interesting idea, but mostly I admired her courage to ask, and put herself out there. I said yes off course. And on top of it all I got to keep the beautiful photos Eileen took of me that day. The ones featured in these post were all captured by her, off course!
I planned a menu based on things I love to eat, ingredients that inspired me that day at the market and things that would photograph well :) I made scallops with leeks as an entrée, gnocchi alla romana as the main dish and caramel crème brulée as a dessert! I am happy to report that she loved the food! And I was one very happy cook :).
A note on the gnocchi: they remind me of my childhood. We loved them at home, and every time we had them for dinner I remember being very very happy. Later on when I was allowed to take my lunch from home to school, at least twice a week I was lucky enough to have "ñoquis de sémola". I vividly remember my friends wanted to steal my food!
I thought I would share this dish that’s close to my heart with Eileen. And with all of you. I hope you like them as much as I do!
It serves 6
Butter 100 g
Milk (whole or not) 1 l
Parmesan 150 g
Semolina 250 g
Egg yolk 2 u
Nutmeg, Salt, Pepper
Parmesan and butter for baking
Butter a baking dish. Line a baking tray with a greased piece of parchment paper and set aside. You’ll need a rolling pin, and a dough cutter.
Bring the milk, the butter, salt, pepper and nutmeg to a boil. Add the semolina mixing energetically at the same time. Cook for 5 minutes.
Remove the pan from the heat and add the egg yolks and the parmesan and mix until combined. Taste and adjust the seasoning to taste.
Transfer to the previously lined baking tray, cover with another piece of parchment paper and roll out the gnocchi dough to about ½ a cm in thickness. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes or until it is firm enough to handle. It doesn’t necessarily have to be cold.
Pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius.
Remove the gnocchi from the fridge and using a cookie dough cutter cut out the gnocchi and place them on the previously buttered baking dish. Place them as shown on the photo below.
Top with parmesan and a piece of butter over each gnocchi.