Chef Matteo Zamboni cooks up a storm for The Chef’s Series Masterclass at Casa Barilla

Chef Matteo Zamboni from Zambo Restaurant was invited to demonstrate his most popular dishes at The Chef’s Series Masterclass at Casa Barilla on Monday 19 May 2017.
Casa Barilla runs a range of cooking classes at their premises at 4 Annandale Street Annandale. For the Chef’s Series Master Classes, Barilla invites a chef from a popular Italian restaurant to demonstrate his best dishes. Participants watch from their table; consuming each dish prepared by the chef throughout the class. All classes include Prosecco and antipasto on arrival, all food, a glass of wine (or two) with your meal, and gelato for dessert. PLUS everyone gets a generous goodie bag with Barilla pastas, sauces and desserts to take home (pictured below).
For the Chef’s Series Masterclass featuring Matteo Zamboni, he prepared: the Casarecce, WA Yabbies, capsicum and hazelnut entree and the delicious wild caught barramundi, Colatura butter, chicory and sundried tomato main meal.

For the Casarecce, WA Yabbies, capsicum and hazelnut entree, he started with putting the yabbies in ice for one hour and then blanched them in boiling water for 90 seconds. He strained them and put them back in the ice to stop the cooking process.  He peeled and diced them and reserved the shells for the stock. For the stock. he cooked the garlic, chopped tomatoes, added the shells and parsley stalks. When the shells were roasted, he added brandy and let it flame. He then added enough water to cover the yabbies and let them boil for 30 minutes. After the stock rested for 30 minutes, he strained it. He then cooked the diced capsicum and added the yabbie stock to bring it to a boil. He cooked the Barilla Casarecce in salty boiling water, then strained and tossed in the yabbies stock. He served it in a bowl with sliced hazelnuts, parsley and lemon zest.

For the wild caught barramundi, colatura butter, chicory and sundried tomatoes main meal, he removed the barramundi from the fridge 45 minutes before cooking and cut it in 150 gram pieces. He boiled the fish stock and added diced butter to create an emulsion. He then added Colatura, lemon juice and salt. He cut the chicory and cooked it in a pan over medium heat with a clove of garlic. He added 50g of the stock and let it evaporate, and seasoned it with salt and vinegar. Then he cooked the barramundi. He placed the chicory, barramundi, and colatura butter on the serving dish, and garnished it with fresh oregano, sundried tomatoes, and Barilla sundried tomato pesto.

Casa Barilla run the best value cooking classes in Sydney and their food is delicious. Their hands-on cooking classes are $90 and their Chef’s Series Masterclasses are $60. This is the price of a restaurant meal but you get so much more.

For more information about The Chef’s Series Masterclass or Barilla Hands-on cooking classes, go to:

Cooking authentic Italian food at Casa Barilla Cooking School

On 7 May 2016. I had the pleasure of attending the ‘Pride of Parma and the Food Valley’ cooking class at the Casa Barilla Cooking School.

Parma is a city in Italy’s Emilia-Romagna region, famed for Parmesan cheese and Parma ham. Therefore, with these two kep ingredients in mind, the two meals choosen for the class were: Taglialetto, with Parma Ham, Asparagus and Roasted Capsicum; and Veal Tenderloin with Parmigiano Reggiano and Balsamic Vinegar Reduction

Before you start cooking Barilla pasta, it is important that you note:

  • Use one litre of water per 100 grams of pasta
  • Do not add oil to the water when the pasta is cooking, it will cause the pasta to slide off
  • Use seven grams of salt per litre of water
  • Do not rinse the pasta after cooking it. Rinsing removes the light the light starch coating, which is important for holding the sauce.
  • Use as much pasta as you do sauce.

Choose good quality pasta when cooking. You can determine the quality of pasta after you have placed it in water. Top notch pasta does not froth when added to water, is golden when cooked and the cooking water is clear after you have cooked the pasta.

The recipes of the food we cooked is documented below.

Taglialetto, with Parma Ham, Asparagus and Roasted Capsicum


250 grams of Barilla Egg Tagliatelle

1/2 jar of Barilla Basilico sauce

2 shallots, thinly sliced

160g of Parma Ham, sliced julienne

One bunch of green asparagus , cut in disks (cut of the tips to use as garnish)

Three red capsicums, roasted in the oven, peeled and seeds removed, cut in slices

80ml of extra virgin olive oil

120g Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, grated

Salt and pepper to taste


In a fry pan, heat two tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil to heat. Add the shallots, the sliced Parma Ham and saute until golden. Add the asparagus disks, season to taste and cook for a further two minutes, and then set them aside. Roast the capsicums in the oven, remove them when cooked and peel them. Blend them with a mixer and the 1/2 jar of Basilico sauce and one tablespoon of olive oil. In a non-stick fry pan, over medium heat poor half of the grated Parmigiano Reggiano in a round metal case. Turn it over to cook on both sides. Watch over it because it can easily burn. Cook the pasta following the packet instructions. Remove the pasta from the boiling water, one minute before the suggested time. Toss the pasta into the fry pan with the parma Ham, add the remaining Parmigiano Reggiano and finish with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Allow your pasta to finish cooking ‘al dente’ adding a little of the cooking water. To serve, pou a layer of capsicum sauce on the plate, create a pasta nest on top of the sauce using the laddle and a big fork, top with the crisp Parmigiano disk and garnish with the asparagus tips that you should cook in the pasta water for one minute in the end.

Veal Tenderloin with Parmigiano Reggiano and Balsamic Vinegar Reduction


600g of veal tenderloin, cut in four portions

Four slices of pancetta

Two cloves of garlic

150g of button mushrooms, cut in quarters

1/2 glass of white wine

1 sprig of thyme

40g Parmigiano Reggiano cheese

50ml of cream

50ml of extra virgin olive oil

60g of fresh spinach leaves

80ml of Balsalmic Vinegar of Modena

Salt and pepper to taste

Wrap the veal tenderloins with the pancetta, tie with a kitchen string and season with salt and pepper. In a fry pan with olive oil,  garlic, thyme saute the meat for two minutes and then add the mushrooms. Add the wine and allow the alcohol to evaporate, cover with a lid and cook for five minutes. remove the string from the tenderloin and rest for a few minutes. In a different fry pan, pour the vinegar in the pan and cook over medium heat until it becomes thick and concentrated. At the same time, in another saucepan, bring the cream to a boil and ass the Parmigiano Reggiano and whisk vigorously until the cheese is melted and the sauce has thickened. Toss the spinach in a bowl with extra virgin olive oil and salt. lay the spinach on the serving plate, add the mushrooms, then the veal on top, dress the meat with the Parmigiano Reggiano sauce and drizzle with the balsamic vinegar.

All in all, the class was fun and the food was delicious. I wonder whether the food was so great because we cooked under the watchful guidance of Michelin star chef, Andrea Tranchero, who ensured we did not make any blunders. I will find out when I attempt to cook the same meal at home with some of the ingredients from my goodie bag.

The cooking class costs $90 per person and includes prosecco and antipasto on arrival, all food and a glass of wine with your meal, and a generous goodie bag to take home.

Classes have a maximum of 16 participants. You watch a demonstration by a chef before you attempt to cook it yourself.

For more information, go to

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