The large Italian portobello mushrooms are delicious and very easy to prepare. You can use them instead of meat for a vegetarian dinner, as a side dish or for a simple lunch together with a green salad and a piece of bread. You can even sneak in a grated black truffle for a more extravagant version.
As side dish that serves 4:
4 large Portobello mushrooms
1-2 large garlic cloves minced
Salt and pepper
For topping Parmesan cheese, grated.
Heat up the oven to 200 degrees.
Cut the stalk out and clean the mushrooms (save the stalk) and leave them upside down on baking paper on a baking tray.
Chop the stalk, and the rest of the ingredients in a food processor. Put the mix back in the mushrooms and sprinkle some parmesan cheese on top.
Place in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes or until the parmesan cheese on top is golden.
Meringues or kisses as they are called in Denmark are so easy to make and they are absolutely fat free, just egg whites, sugar and in this recipe I have added some chopped pistachio. Whats not to like!
3 Egg whites (room temperature)
120 g sugar
25 g finely chopped pistacchio nuts
Preheat the oven to 100 degrees celcius and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Beat the egg whites with an electric mixer until completely stiff, then while beating the eggs add sugar, a tablespoon at a time. Mix until the meringue mixture forms stiff peaks.
Carefully mix/fold in the chopped pistachio nuts.
Using a piping bag pipe a dollop of the meringue mixture onto your baking sheet.
Bake for around 60-90 minutes, remove from the oven and allow the meringues to cool before serving.
At Castello di Montegiove we are lucky to have our own truffle reserve with black truffles. We very often organise truffle hunts for our guests and it is always a great adventure to experience how the truffle hunter and his dogs are collaborating to find the funny little round truffles growing below the ground. For this recipe I am using the black Montegiove truffles.
375 g Risotto rice
50 g Fresh black truffles, grated (leave some to grate over the risotto for serving)
1 small onion, chopped
4 tblsp. Olive oil
1 ½ l boiling warm Broth
½ glass of white vine
20 g Grated Parmesan cheese (or as much as you like)
30 g of butter
Salt and pepper for seasoning
Heat the oil and half of the butter in a large saucepan over a low heat, add the onion and let it fry for a couple of minutes, add rise and let it all cook for 2-3 minutes.
Add the wine and let it evaporate, then add ½ cup of boiling broth to the rice and stir until the broth is absorbed. Continue adding broth ½ cup at a time, stirring continuously, until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is al dente, about 15-20 minutes.
At the same time heat the rest of the oil and butter in a small pot and add the grated truffles. Warm up over a low heat, add the truffle mix to the risotto.
Remove the pan from the heat, add the Parmesan cheese, stir well, season to taste with salt and pepper, leave the risotto with the lid on for a minute to rest, then serve on warm plates and grate fresh truffles on the top.
The best thing about these first days of the wine harvest is the newly pressed red grape juice “il mosto di vino rosso” a delicacy closely linked to autumn. For us at Castello di Montegiove it marks the moment when the grapes pass from the vineyard to the cellar.
In the evening we gather around the big table in the kitchen with a glass of fresh pressed sweet grape must and drink it together with roasted chestnuts from the Umbrian mountains around Montegiove. We eat them with a pinch of salt and somehow, we always end up eating way too many, the combination of the sweet must and the salty chestnuts is just delicious.
End of August and September is just around the corner, the garden is full of delicious apples and blackberries just waiting to be transformed into cakes and other autumn delights.
This cake can be made with cinnamon for the Scandinavian hygge taste or with vanilla for a fresher summer taste. It is nice for dessert or served with a hot cup of tea on a cold autumn or winter afternoon.
1kg apples peeled and chopped
2-3 cups Water
Sugar (depending on how sweet the apples are)
Vanilla sugar or cinnamon
125 g Almonds grated
125 g Butter softened
125 g Brown Sugar
75 g Flour (if gluten free use the flour for bread)
Cook apples in water and lemon juice until tender. When cooked season with sugar, cinnamon or vanilla.
Preheat the oven to 190 C. Butter an ovenproof pie dish.
Pour the cooked apples into the pie dish.
Topping: Mix grated almonds, soft butter, sugar, eggs and the flour.
Pour the topping over the apples and even out.
Bake for 30 minutes 190 C or until the top is golden and crisp.
Remove cake from oven, can be served warm or cold, serve with blackberries and ice cream or whipped cream.
This weekend we had a great experience with 3 Danish wild boar hunters, hardworking chef Mikkel Karstad and photographer Anders Schonnemann.
The hunters where out early morning and late night waiting for the boars. They all went looking for truffles with our truffle hunter and his dogs and found a nice handful of fresh truffles. Mikkel and Anders collected wild cicoria and herbs with signora Mara from the village and they made a gorgeous dinner together.
Saturday Mikkel grilled the meat from the wild boar the hunters had shot the day before and we all had lunch together in the garden under the trees. It was fascinating to see how everyone collaborated to make it all work out perfect. Anders made stunning photos of the whole event and we all fell in love with Montegiove all over again just looking at his photos.
A great weekend with lots of wine, fun and inspiration.