Let’s call Executive Chef Rocco Agostino the veteran. The chef and partner of Pizzeria Libretto has already impressed with his Ghetto Gourmet abilities by creating the popular hangover helper combo of hotdogs and French fries on pizza. As a chef and competitor in this weekend’s Abbey’s Kitchen Stadium event, he’s more than ready to create two dishes with a secret ingredient as part of the friendly battle.
His first Ghetto Gourmet experience didn’t put him off doing a second. Could he please create something with Fig Newtons? My only request to him, “don’t grind them up, batter something and throw it in the fryer.”
Working among the chaos of a busy lunch service, Rocco thought of the classic flavours of figs wrapped in prosciutto and decided to do a less classy version of this with the chewy Fig Newtons. The cookies were chopped and mixed with goat cheese and a dash of salt, then spoonfuls were wrapped in delicious, salty prosciutto. The salty bites were crisped on both sides in a hot pan and served with some baby arugula and salmoriglio– a Southern Italian condiment made from olive oil, garlic and herbs. The finished Fig Newtons and prosciutto were a mix of sweet and salty, and Rocco decided that next time (if there was a next time) he would add nuts to cut some of the sweetness of fig filling.
“It’s Fig Newton-y,” was my comment.
Tight-lipped about what he’s planning to create for this Sunday’s event (it is a competition after all), Rocco said slyly, “it will be something Italian.”
Chef may or may not be creating one sweet and one savoury dish. To use a term we’ve heard a lot lately, Rocco will allegedly make something sweet, rich, cold and creamy with a very unexpected secret ingredient. I did not see this product. Therefore I cannot verify the authenticity of this dish. It will be offered for a price of $6, as will all dishes at Abbey’s Kitchen Stadium.
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