Italian Culinary Experience with Cecconi’s and Zonin

Zonin has been hosting a series of monthly Italian culinary events at Miami-Dade Culinary School. I’ve been fortunate enough to be invited to these delicious events which feature some of Miami’s most talented Italian chefs. September’s guest chef was SOHO Beach House – Cecconi’s Sergio Sigala.

Aperitivo: Bresaola Rotolino, Grana Padano & Rucola

This cured raw beef was excellently paired with the cheese and rucola. This was my first time tasting beef like this and I would describe it similarly to prosciutto except it comes from a cow and it’s thicker. It was the perfect start to the 5-course meal.

Antipasto: Trota (ew) Alla Gardesana with Grilled Olenta

Obviously this food blog is about everything out of the sea so I can’t say I liked this dish. I did end up picking off the fish, and I attempted to eat around what the fish didn’t touch 😛

Primo: Gnocchi Di Pane & Spinach, Taleggio Fonduta (Summer Truffle)

Can I just preface by saying this was the MOST AMAZING GNOCCHI THAT’S EVER ENTERED MY MOUTH? Because it is. While most gnocchi is made using potato, this was made from bread – leftover bread at that! Chef even explained the ingredients he used and made it right in front of us. It seems so simple, but I know if I ever try cooking it myself, it will never result in this miracle dumpling. Infused with spinach and topped with Summer Truffle, this was a gnocchi orgasm in my mouth. Luckily my dearest Olee Fowler is gluten-intolerant so I actually got two helpings 🙂

Secondo: Risotto Al Salto, Rabit & Mushrooms

Enjoying rabbit jerky as a child in Iowa is not the same as having it roasted with risotto and mushrooms. You know how almost every ‘bizarre’ meat “tastes like chicken?” Well… This did (sorta). I do admit that I tried this dish and probably ate most of it. However, I just can’t accept the fact that I ate Bugs Bunny. The texture of rabbit is like chicken, but it had tendons and bones in it which I did not enjoy.  I am very weird and picky when it comes to meat. When I order meat, I want meat. I do not want bones, veins, tendons, and other body parts. I’m sure everyone else who enjoy eating rabbit did like this dish though.

Dolci: Crema Di Ricotta Di Pecora, Pere & Vin Brulle’ Sauce

This was an incredibly unique dessert. Pears soaked in red wine topped with ricotta cream – my goodness. You have the sweetness of the pears mixed with the bitterness of wine mixed with creamy cheese. I was a fan of this although I don’t think the average human being probably would.

Wine from the Lombardy Region

Chef Sergio was delightful, humorous, and just so darn cute! I wish I could stick him in my pocket and make him cook for me at home every night.


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