Last weekend I was invited for an Italian Cook-off with Chef Giuseppe Lioce at Prego, Westin, Pune. I had never attended a cook off and yes I was curious to know what it would be all, so I decided to be a part of it. And of course, the other motive was to let you all know what’s happening in Pune. The event was organised by Food Bloggers Association of India (FBAI) and Gourmet It Up at the Italian restaurant Prego in Westin Pune.
FBAI is a one of its kind organisation in India that organizes and posts news about all F&B related events across India. They also regularly organize events and meets that you shouldn’t me missing if you have been invited. Most of the events they organize are by invite only. Keep a look out for their newsletters that are filled with fantastic recipes and some interesting restaurant reviews. FBAI is an influencer that is making its presence felt across the food and beverage – electronic, online and social media space in India.
Gourmet It Up partners with exclusive restaurants across Mumbai, Pune and Delhi to give you an unique dining experience. They have dining experiences that suit most budgets. You can sign up with them and start on a truly awesome food journey. So if you are looking out to experiment a new restaurant or sample a new cuisine, stop by the GourmetItUp page and you may just find something that suits you.
Alright, so gear up for a picture heavy post!
Italian Cook-off at Prego, Westin Pune
We got to cook alongside Chef Giuseppe Lioce an awesome 6 course meal that consisted of one starter, two salads, one pasta dish, a main and a dessert.
This was the first dish that we made Parmigiana Di Melanzane – Baked eggplant with tomato sauce and Parmesan. The first pic was of the dish before it was popped in the oven.
This was followed by the salads that were easy to make and we had them ready in less than 5 minutes. The Insalata Di Gorgonzola was a delicious walnut, pear and rocket leaf salad that was drizzled with balsamic vinegar, olive oil and a dash of gorgonzola cheese.
My favourite was the Panzanella Salad that was made with country bread and mixed with fresh vegetables and basil. White vinegar was the only dressing that was added to it along with some olive oil. Filling and delicious, this is something that I will surely try at home too.
Then came the mains, the Maltagliati Caprese, the pasta with buffalo mozarella cheese. I had no idea that making pasta from scratch was so easy! Yes, I kneaded the dough, rolled out the pasta, cut it and made some awesome pasta too! We went a teeny bit overboard with the mozarella that made the pasta salty, but the experience was more overwhelming than the taste!
Then came the mains of sea bass on a bed of tomatoes, olives, capers, with fried polenta and spinach. I am not a sea food person so I choose to stand back and watch this dish being cooked instead. It did look superbly delicious.
The highlight was certainly the dessert which again was made from the scratch, we kneaded our own dough for the calzones that was stuffed with delicious Nutella and then deep fried. It was served warm with a sprinkling of icing sugar and vanilla ice-cream. Doesn’t it look simply gorgeous?
As I said earlier, this was the first time I got to attend a Cook Off, I had no idea what it would be about and I totally loved the whole experience. Tasting authentic Italian food was a delightful experience.
That was what happened the last weekend in my city. I had absolute fun and I am certainly looking forward to more events like these. FBAI and GourmetItUp, are you listening?
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*All of my reviews are based on my own personal experiences with the brand/products. If it is a sponsored post, it is indicated. Most of the brands and products reviewed are what I have tried and tested and truly recommend! All Photographs are (C) Pratibha unless stated otherwise.*