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Vegan vs Professional Chef: Can I Make Their Italian Pasta Dish Vegan?



(Latin guitar music) – Hey guys, I am super pumped today because this is going to be a very different video than what I usually do There is a restaurant here in Toronto named Stelvio

They are a traditionally, more north Italian restaurant, and they're not vegan-friendly at all They reached out to me because they kept getting patrons asking what their vegan options were, and one of the women that runs the restaurant is a big fan of The Edgy Veg So she reached out and challenged me to challenge her chef, to try to make one of their most popular dishes vegan The dish is called pizzoccheri Apparently I sound really German when I say that

It is like the Italian version of mac and cheese It's more from northern Italy, so you're getting earthy, like alpine flavors It uses buckwheat pasta, which is inherently vegan, completely traditionally vegan, which is amazing, it uses three different types of flours, and then potatoes, which again, if you're more up north, it's readily available, sour cabbage, and three different types of cheese So they sent me the flavor profile of the cheeses and asked me to pick up a vegan substitute for butter that I think would be worthy, and I think I have one, and also the three different types of cheeses that we're going to use So I'm super excited about this because chefs often times kind of either turn up their nose at vegan food or think we're ridiculous or don't think that they can make something as tasty

So I'm really excited to show Chef Andre that vegan food can be just as indulgent and just as delicious and just as comforting as its vegan counterpart, and I'm pretty sure that they haven't really tried any vegan cheeses, so I think that these are really going to blow their mind The next time you see me, I'm going to be at Stelvio with Chef Andre, and we are going to see if we can veganize the pizzoccheri (elegant strings music) All right, so Chef is in the kitchen We're starting to set everything up here I'm really excited to see if he can make this work

I'm excited to see if these cheeses work It's just an easy way to show people that you can have really delicious vegan food It doesn't have to be, you know, not cheesy, and it doesn't have to be no oil It can be big and rich and beautiful and have cool flavors, so I'm excited to see if we can pull this off – [Interviewer] Are you feeling a bit nervous about putting this all together? – A little bit

I'm just sweating a lot (laughs) I'm nervous I don't know if– I mean, I'm sure, but I don't know it's going to be, if it's going to taste like the real one, because with this cheese it's a new experience also for me, and it's nice to see how it's going to look like in the end So yeah, I'm excited and sweating at the same time, (laughs) so it's fine – Okay, so we have everything set up here

– We already bring a boil the water We have to put salt in the pot And then for the first ingredient, we have to put potato that we cut before, and then the sour cabbage, and after a few minutes of cooking, and then the pasta – So everything in one pot – Yes, it– – That's nice and easy

– It's nice and easy, but at the same time, you need to cook the potato at the right timing, – Yes – otherwise, it's going to be super hard, – Yeah – or too soft Those ones are the pizzochheri, and visibly you can see there is, a thick diatella A little bit short than normal diatella

This one I made just with buckwheat flour, two different type of buckwheat flour, and regular flour and water Add salt in the pot – [Candace] I can do this, I've cooked potato before How many will this make? This is one portion? – Yes, those, these only are specifically for one portion I'm excited at the end to see, – Me too

– the plate at the end of everything – So how many minutes, roughly, are we going to be cooking this? – Around three, three minutes, three or four minutes, because after that we have to put those with the cabbage and the pasta We need a couple of minutes, so-so for the pasta, so in total around six, seven minutes – Adding the cabbage – Yes, – [Candace] Just dump it in

– [Andre] all in one – [Candace] Look at that, I'm a pro – [Andre] Amazing In this case, you need to put it a little bit soft, but if the sour cabbage is a little bit more crunchy, it tastes super good – And where in Italy originally is this from? Is this more from the north? – This one is strictly from the north, from Valtellina, in a city called Sondrio

So it's really near the Alps, in the north of Italy, and — yes they use, like, the cheese that they have all during the month – Everybody has lots of cabbage and lots of potatoes – They eat a lot of cabbage and potato and also a lot of cheese, and they made this beautiful plate It's a kind of comfort food you know, because it's rich, it tastes good, it's super rich and you can feel – It's like a hug – Yeah, exactly

– from the inside – [Andre] Grab the pasta You can see also in the pot all this buckwheat flour You have to put this one all in one pot because it's like our minestrone So if you cook some, if you cook the pasta separate from the potato and the cabbage, it seems different or just like a sour sweet pasta

– Right – Like this — – Is it because of the starches? – Exactly and you can also taste with the noodles with the pasta or the flavor of the cabbage and the potato – Our potato, cabbage and pasta is almost ready or ready? – Almost ready, one minute and then we can put all this beautiful stuff inside the butter – It's — we like to call it vegan butter – Vegan butter

– But it's pretty much just vegan friendly margarine There's a couple different types of butter that vegans have, but I find that cooking with a cashew bashed butter can be difficult sometimes So I just figured an oil base would probably be best Can I work in your kitchen now? – [Andre] Mhm – [Candace] It smells so good

– [Andre] Few seconds with the butter alone Ready add the pepper in, like a real Italian, and maybe a little more – Like a real Italian (laughs) – Like a real Italian, I love pepper And now the cheese

– Now the cheese, okay How much of this cheese? – [Andre] I think half of that one – [Candace] Okay (oven beeping) Cut this guy, maybe put it into medallions – [Andre] Yes perfect, all right

– [Candace] Help it along (pot sizzles) – [Candace] Oh, look at how creamy it is, ha ha – [Andre] A little bit more, that's it – I mean it looks really cheesy – [Andre] Yeah, I think a bit of Parmesan

– [Candace] Which one? – [Andre] Ooh – [Candace] Which one of the salty parms? – A bit of salt I think that we can be generous with this one – [Candace] With this one? – [Andre] So, all of it – [Candace] All of it? – [Andre] Yeah

– [Candace] Okay There we go – [Andre] Like that – [Candace] I mean I won't say no So does it look similar? – [Andre] Very similar

Throw inside – [Candace] I mean it looks, very comforting already – [Andre] And we're ready for the pizzoccheri, vegan, with Candace here (laughs) – And Chef – Thank you

– He asked me to call him Chef (bright Italian music) So we have our plated, finished pizzoccheri Am I saying it properly? No (laughs) – Seems like German – So should we give it a try? First thoughts, like does it, thank you, does it look similar? – Very similar, very similar

And also the smell is so so good, and I can feel the mountain (mumbles) (laughs) – The smell is really good, is the smell similar? – Yeah, very similar – All right Oh my god, it's so good (laughs) I mean, I don't know what the original tastes like, but this is amazing

– Super good Very, very good – Very close? – Very close, very, very close, super good – Yes, we win! – Actually super good – It's so good

I'm making this at home on a regular basis And it's all in one pot, which is really nice Al's an Italian chef, – Yes – and cheese is a very coveted, beautiful, thing Has it kind of changed? Has this experience changed how you see the potential for dairy free options? – Dairy free

Yes, yes I never use, honestly vegan cheese, because it's something that you need to know how to use properly I can open a little bit my mind to use those (laughs) vegan cheese for a traditional recipe like this one I'm really proud also – Me too, high-five! We killed that

Well that makes me so happy, I think kind of the journey for what I do is kind of trying to open up people's minds that way and show that, you know, five years ago there was a lot of really bad vegan cheese – Yeah sometimes when you think about vegan cheese you say, "oh, it tastes like plastic," – Right – or it doesn't have any kind of taste or smell I'm really, really surprised about this cheese, so yeah – Yay

We are definitely going to finish this, but thank you so much for letting me come into your kitchen, into your restaurant, for showing me how to make this, and for being so open-minded All right guys, if you want to check out Stelvio, I'll leave all of their information in the description box below Thank you again, Chef, – Thank you – for letting us come in today And if you're new here, hit the subscribe button

If you like these types of videos, hit the thumbs up and we'll see you next time Bye!

Source: Youtube

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