Chef Stefano Maddalin, cadorino by birth, after 5 years of hotel school and various experiences around Italy, he is currently taking care of the restaurant La Žìria, located at the Hotel Monaco Sport Hotel, Santo Stefano di Cadore, in the province of Belluno,Italy.
I met him in his native village, a magical location in the heart of Val Comelico, ideal to spend the holidays in complete freedom, surrounded by wilderness of the majestic Dolomites Mountain.Stefano showed up with a beautiful basket of porcini mushrooms just delivered minutes before. Our conversation went obviously right to the ‘king of mushroom’ Let’s talk about porcini .How to pick them up? How to clean?
Simply use your hands and a small knife. first digging the heart, then reaching the root and cutting with the knife. To take them home, use a wicker basket, possibly with wide intercom, so the spores can pass through the cracks and return to sow the ground.
Never store them in plastic bags. Remove the earth with a small knife, then brush the remaining dirt with a small brush. Never throw them underwater because they get damaged.
A local dish to pair porcini ?
Typically cervo in salmì, dear slowly marinated and cooked with red wine and spices, to take away that wild taste, a common mistake is to sprinkle on some lemon, I don’t like that, I prefer to garnish or top with cocoa, raspberries or blueberries.
Let’s imagine that you are the guest of honor on the final episode of TV Master Chef, what would you create to impress the audience?
Well, I worked in starred restaurants, where the dished and the presentation could be very laborious, but personally I prefer the simplicity, a dish where the ingredients are synonymous of reality and they are not disguised by other flavors.
A twist of your traditional mountain cuisine?
Canederli as a dessert. Canederli are bread dumplings and can be considered part of ‘cucina povera’ (cuisine of the poor), as they are made of simple and inexpensive ingredients: stale bread moistened with milk and bound with eggs and a small amount of flour. I sweeten them and topped with berries jam and elevated them to a tasty dessert.
THE RECIPE :
RAW PORCINI SALAD
Cut the porcini very thin and garnished with fresh lettuce, cherry tomatoes or simply sprinkled with parmesan, salt pepper and lemon, you can add some fresh arrugula and toss with balsamic vinaigre.
Hotel Monaco Sport Hotel,
Santo Stefano di Cadore, (Belluno),Italy.