Danilo Cortelleni, the head chef to the Italian Ambassador and Masterchef: The Professionals finalist, cooked up an Italian feast at the Scavolini Store West Hampstead, on the edge of Fortune Green on Tuesday evening.
Danilo took centre stage in the wonderful Diesel Social kitchen, where he created a host of delicious Italian food for guests to enjoy.
It was a real treat to watch the Masterchef star in action as he cooked dishes from his latest book, 4 Grosvenor Square. As the Prosecco flowed, we got an opportunity to watch a top chef in action, and learned a few Italian cooking secrets too.
As soon as Danilo started cooking, the showroom filled with delicious aromas. He tantalised our taste buds with his amazing cooking, and the finished results tasted as good as they looked and smelled.
Delicious dishes included marinated Sicilian red prawns with burrata mousse, pumpkin risotto with sage and gorgonzola cheese and Danilo’s show stopping multicolour ravioli with ricotta.
“You can’t have an Italian cooking demonstration in an Italian kitchen without fresh pasta. The multicolour ravioli looks hard to make, but as everyone saw, it is not that complicated, once you overcome the fear”, says Danilo.
You can tell that Danilo cooks from the heart, as he talks about the importance of putting love and care into every dish.
“The basic rule of Italian cooking is that you must love the ingredients and put care into the preparation. If you don’t put love into what you are doing it won’t work. It is the same with the place where you cook the food. If the food is comforting, the space where the food is cooking needs to be comforting too. I can talk for a good slice of Italians, especially ex-pats living in London, when I say that the kitchen and the food makes you think of home. My cooking tonight is a celebration of Italian life and that is why I have loved cooking at Scavolini, it feels familiar and homely”, says Danilo.
Brani Hadzhi, showroom manager says: “We are so pleased that Danilo could join us in the showroom. It was great to see our two fully working display kitchens being used by such a prestigious chef. Danilo’s cooking brought the authentic a taste of Italian food to West Hampstead tonight. We hope this is the first of many visits from Danilo”.
“Scavolini kitchens are how we Italians feel a kitchen should be, everything is where it should be. The Scavolini designers understand how you use space and how you move around, and the kitchens work well.
In the two and half years since it opened the Fortune Green showroom has quickly become a destination store for stylish contemporary and traditional Italian kitchen, bathroom and living room furniture.
The team at the Scavolini Store has also become a part of the local community. They sponsor the Friends of Fortune Green monthly clean up and took part in the annual Jester Festival.
“Our clients are mostly from North London and we particularly enjoy meeting and getting to know the locals. Many have become friends, for example, we recently hosted the local Women’s Institute for one of their monthly meetings. We love opening the showroom to the community and will be holding more events in 2018”, says Brani.