An Italian cookery class with Rosario, chef at Locanda De Gusti

After my recent outstanding meal at Locanda De Gusti, I jumped at the offer to go along to one of Chef Rosario’s evening cookery classes. I love Italian food (especially Rosario’s) and I love cooking so a perfect match!

in Rosario’s kitchen

I wasn’t sure what to expect but on arrival there was already a mix of folk there, men, women, friends, couples and soloists and a variety of ages – on the tables were aprons, chef’s hats and menus for the supper that we’d be cooking! I would have dearly loved a glass of wine but after a little over-indulgence at the rugby the day before all I was able to summon up, supping-wise was a San Pellegrino.

preparing the shortcrust pastry for our dessert

First we paired up and prepared the shortcrust pastry so that the dough could be chilled before rolling out and lining the ‘tins’ and then went out in the kitchen to see Rosario in action preparing the starters. The evening was a very informal affair with a mixture of us prepping and Rosario cooking. Followed by us all sitting down to tuck into our efforts.

There' a chef in the kitchen

There’ a chef in the kitchen

Rosario himself is charmingly passionate about simple ingredients, ‘real’ Mediterranean flavours and dishes (he has little respect for the creamy carbonaras and bologneses found in most Italian restaurants) and it was great to see him in situ working his magic.

Sea Bass for our Mains

nido di melanzane all griglia con rughette, provlone piccante e Pomodorini secchi 

Nest of charcoal grilled aubergine thinly sliced served with provolone piccante, rocket and dried cherry tomatoes drizzled with extra virgin olive oil

our starters – aubergine, provlone cheese & tomatoes

our starters – aubergine, provlone cheese & tomatoes

Filetto di Spigola scottato in padella con olio, aglio e vino bianco servito su crema di asparagi e crocccantini di pancetta

Fillet of sea bass pan seared with olive oil, garlic, a dash of white wine and flat leaf parsley served on a bed of pureed asparagus and diced crispy pancetta

a little extra - Lamb on the asparagus puree we did the fish on

a little extra – Lamb on the asparagus puree we did the fish on

Crostatina con mascarpone infuso con buccia di limone e vanignila finita con more scottate con zucchero, succo d’arrancia e Cointreau

Sweet short crust pastry filled with mascarpone infused with vanilla and lemon rind finished off with black berries that have been cooked with sugar, orange juice and a dash of Cointreau

time for dessert (check out the giant tub of Nutella)

time for dessert (check out the giant tub of Nutella)

A really super thing to do of an evening and I’d recommend it to anyone who loves Italian food and who enjoys cooking! Would make a great gift!

my finished & fairly modest dessert (others were somewhat more creative)

my finished & fairly modest dessert (others were somewhat more creative)

The evening started at 18.30 and I was one of the first to leave at about 10.30pm. More info can be found here & I still can’t wait to go back for another lovely supper, ahem, ‘Dr Science’….can you hear me…?

Locanda De Gusti, 7-11 East London Street, Edinburgh EH7 4BN 

Telephone: 0131 558 9581

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