In our segment "In the Kitchen" we challenge cooks of all walks of life to create a dish - using the ingredients we give them. We unveil which ingredients they use at the top of the show - and they have to create a dish by the time we get to their segment.
Wednesday's "In the Kitchen" contestant was Laurie Tenuta -- an authentic Italian and wife of the owner of Valli Produce. Since she is an avid home cook and contributes to dishes prepared at Valli so we thought she'd be great for our challenge.
We set out Alessi products that must be used, and some kitchen staples - then the chef needs to work their magic!
Our Friends at Alessi sent Laurie home with a gift basket of goodies. Visit their website for all the Alessi products: http://alessifoods.com/
Alessi and Valli Produce have a surprise for our viewing audience.
Until 2 a.m. Thursday, go to the main page of windycitylive.com, click on Promotions and go to the WCL Grocery Instant Win contest for your chance at winning one of these great prizes:
A $50 gift certificate to Valli Produce
$90 Alessi gift box
And you can opt in for a free package of Alessi Four Cheese Farro.
Plus one lucky member of our studio audience went home with the Alessi basket of goodies and a $50 gift certificate to Valli Produce.
Visit the Valli Produce website:
PASTA WITH EGGPLANT AND SAUSAGE
1lb. Alessi pasta
1 lb. mild Italian sausage
2 medium eggplants
Alessi olive oil
Alessi marinara sauce 24 oz.
1 tsp. crushed hot pepper
1 medium Spanish onion
3 garlic cloves
1 cup parmigiano cheese
In a pan cook sausage until nice and brown. Cut into " rounds. Set aside.
Take eggplants, wipe off, cut into cubes. Saute 3 minced cloves of garlic and 1 chopped onion in heated olive oil. Add eggplant, salt and pepper. Cook for about hour or until eggplant gets soft. Add marinara sauce, cook for about 20 minutes. Add some fresh parsley, salt if needed and hot crushed peppers.
In a pot, bring 6 quarts of salted water to boil. Add pasta, cook "al dente" Drain well.
Place on a platter. Add sauce mixture with eggplant. Top with cooked Italian sausage. Add 1 cup of parmigiano cheese. Mix and top with fresh parsley.
ARTICHOKES AL FORNO
3 - 14 oz. quartered Alessi artichoke hearts, drained
cup Alessi seasoned bread crumbs
2 - freshly chopped garlic cloves
cup parmiggiano reggiano cheese
1/3 cup Alessi olive oil
1 tsp. oregano
Salt and pepper
Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.
Rinse artichokes and drain well. Coarsely chop artichokes and place in a bowl. Add in rest of ingredients, using your hands to mix well. Spread mixed ingredients in a 9 x 11 ovenproof glass pan. Sprinkle extra cheese on top before placing in ove.
Cook uncovered for 35-40 minutes.
Serve as a side dish or on bruschetta.
LEMON GELATO AI FRUTTI DI BOSCO
Lemon gelato from Valli Produce
cup each: fresh blackberries, blueberries, strawberries and raspberries
Alessi Balsamic reduction
Alessi Amaretti cookies
Place all fresh fruit in a bowl. Take a cup of cookies, place them in a plastic bag and crush them. Mix berries and crushed cookies. Scoop out gelato in a clear glass, top with fresh fruit. Drizzle with Balsamic Reduction. Decorate with one Amaretto cookie.