sharing (Italian) food to enjoy life

Discover and Share as a Company

Posted by Jim Carfrae on December 14, 2009

Last week we had a “tapas” style holiday celebration in the Humber Room at Humber College.  They closed off the room for us and served us seven different appetizers, with a neat mini frozen chocolate mousse to finish.

The chef who developed the recipes is Austrian, so there were some very “non-Italian” Italian ideas; that had many people asking for the recipes. I have outlined the most popular two here, with my own two cents on how to modify or simply them.

Smoked hot Calabrese on a roesti with fried onions and sour cream


2 Pc Potatoes large (peeled and fine julienned)
    Vegetable oil for cooking
    Butter for cooking
  TT Salt and pepper
Heat up a frying pan and add a little bit of vegetable oil. With a spoon arrange the potatoes in the frying pan in small roestis. (pancakes) . Season with salt and pepper. The roestis shouldn’t be thicker than 1 cm. When the roestis brown on the bottom add the butter and flip them over. Brown them on the other side too. When the are nice and crispy transfer them onto a baking sheet lined with a parchment paper.
2 Pc Sautéed onion julienne
Put the sautéed onions on the roesti.
200 G Smoked calabrese
Cut the calabrese into a 3cm x 3 cm sticks and smoke them till they have a good smoky flavour. (30 – 45 Min.) Slice them thin and put in top the sautéed onion on the roesti with it.
200 Ml Sour cream
Put the sour cream into a squeeze bottle and garnish the sausage with it.


I will be making a version of this over the holidays, but plan to skip the smoking, use Sopressata over Calabrese and give the Sopressata a super fast fry on only one side.

  • Cooking really brings out the spice of the Calabrese, I feel it then overpowers the other flavours. You can buy Sopressata or Calabrese at the deli case or in a small piece in the self-serve section. For this recipe you want it to be about 5mm/1/8” thick, so should not buy the pre-sliced.
  • I will put the pan on high and quickly fry one side for about 20-30 seconds.  This will give it a crispness, but leave the meat in its more natural dry cured state.

Pancetta with du puy lentils and speck

100 G Butter
200 G Pancetta small diced
1 Pc Onion peeled and fine diced
6 Cloves Garlic chopped
½ Pc Carrot peeled and small diced
3 Twigs thyme
1 Stalk Celery washed and small diced
100 Ml White wine
100 G Speck
6 Pc Pancetta  slice ¼ “ thick and pan-fried (not crispy)  for garnish.
  TT Salt & pepper
  TT Chopped herbs: chives and parsley
  TT Lemon juice
2 Cups Cooked du puy lentils


1)      Melt the butter and pancetta in a rondo.

2)      Add onions, garlic, carrots, celery and thyme and develop the flavours. Add white wine and simmer till the vegetables are soft.

3)      Add speck and cooked du puy lentils and season with salt, pepper, lemon juice and herbs.

4)      Arrange the lentils in a Chinese spoon and garnish with chopped herbs and a slice of pan-fried pancetta.

This is an amazing combination of flavours; you have never had lentils this good. A couple things:

  • It’s not always easy to find speck, you can buy pre-sliced smoked prosciutto, (which is what speck is), and julienne.  I will add the speck at the very end so it is warmed, but not cooked.
  • I will use olive oil instead of butter, because that’s how I cook.
  • I will make half the recipe, because this will be one of several appetizers I serve.
  • I will use a regular soup spoon, because I don’t have the fancy china ones – maybe a good Christmas gift.
  • I will buy a can of lentils as I don’t have any idea what “du puy” lentils are.

4 Responses to “Discover and Share as a Company”

  1. Some of your readers, namely me, have no idea what speck and the du puy lentils are. And is there any way to post a conversion table or more specific measurements instead of abbreviations? Thanks for showing mercy.lol…

    • jimmyprosciutto said

      I’ll expand the abbreviations – may take a day to check in with Chef Leo. 28 grams are 1 ounce. TT is to taste, like we actually know.

  2. Oops, maybe I should have read the whole thing before commenting! Hahaha…I am so impulsive at times. Could ya tell?

  3. Hello Jimmyprosciutto, I like the name! These two foods are right down my ally, I like to try them both. Thanks for sharing.

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