Virtual events are part of the new normal social interaction and can seem dubious or intimidating at first, especially if you’re cooking bombolotti all’ amatriciana alongside award-winning Italian chef Gino Angelini. But combine a charming command of the kitchen, a food-loving group of colleagues and a good bottle of Casale del Giglio, Cesanese 2016 from Lazio and I can highly recommend it.
In addition to takeout and delivery, a growing number of restaurants and chefs are offering virtual cooking classes that are actually a lot of fun and quite frankly much easier and less work than all the shopping, chopping, measuring and time involved in cooking from scratch. Together with his wife and partner Elizabeth Angelini, the Italian chef led us through a lovely hour of group cooking that can be as close as you can get to quality time with friends right now.
All the ingredients arrive via contactless delivery a few hours before your class. The swordfish carpaccio came beautifully sliced with vinaigrette, bottarga and chopped pistachios separate for the last minute garnish.
Everything is portioned out perfectly for one – the bombolotti pasta, one perfectly ripe heirloom tomato, expertly sliced guanciale, pecorino gran cru, chili flakes, unbruised basil leaves and white wine for deglazing. A bottle of Angelini’s cold pressed olive oil was just the start. What needed refrigeration, like the dolce (a gluten free chocolate caprese cake made with almond flour and topped with crème anglaise), goes into the fridge until showtime.
Or, if you really want to make it easy on yourself, the ready-made sauces, including the Amatriciana, are available for purchase at markets including Bristol Farms and Eataly. Angelini Osteria hopes to offer the virtual cooking classes to the public in September.
With the right lively group of friends, it’s the best time you can safely spend without a mask. For the recipe, watch the slideshow.