Pastas, risottos and soups signed by Bruno Barbieri, the 7-star chef
You know that I like to be whimsical, different, curious, thirsty and hungry (also) for curiosity. And you know that I am always demanding, in this case even on a cruise. Yes, because despite the good experience (and often the not really light bill) it is well known that on a cruise it is necessary to adapt. So when I discovered the “destination dishes” I could only try them, I embarked in no time, also because they were designed by chef Bruno Barbieri. Perhaps you all know him for Masterchef (and I was able to see him in his shirt and stove up close) but during his career he collected 7 Michelin stars. A unique record, which has become second today are to those of Enrico Bartolini. The first major milestone (crowned by a double star) was at the Locanda Solarola in Castel Guelfo. That’s why my great expectation. “Destination dishes are dishes that I have created to be offered during Costa Cruises’ cruises for dinner, anticipating flavors, smells and colors that guests will be able to discover in the destination of the following day. These are special dishes, from appetizers to main courses, highlighted in the menu and offering iconic dishes of the Mediterranean but revisited in a gourmet key, which guests can choose at no additional cost “that’s what Bruno tells me. A real journey in the Mediterranean dedicated to flavors, often dedicated to first courses which, let’s face it, are the most representative of the Mediterranean diet. Direction Catania? Here are the maccheroni alla norma in gratin with Sicilian scents, with first salt ricotta powder. This dish enhances the taste of aubergine, thanks to the combination of coppery tomatoes, extra virgin olive oil, and first salt ricotta. Always to stay in Sicily, the first dish dedicated to Palermo is pasta with sardines, raisins, pine nuts and ricotta forte. In this case, the goal is to let guests experience a breath of the deep Mediterranean, starting with the Sardinian, the typical Mediterranean fish with an intense flavor, perfect with pine nuts and wild fennel. And if we want to push ourselves out of Italy but remaining in the Mediterranean and within the columns of Hercules, here are the typical first courses of Malta and Marseille. To celebrate the first, a dish that uses the typical Gozo Gbesjna cheese, a small round cheese made in Gozo with sheep’s milk, salt and rennet. Gbesjna is presented in a cheese mold made with them straws blind and intertwined with each other, very suggestive. To enhance the flavor, sailing towards Malta you can taste Ravjul stuffed with Gozo Gbesjna, tomato and garlic sauce. Before arriving in Marseille, however, here are the typical Paninesses, a traditional Marseille dish that consists of chickpea flour and water cooked together to a consistency similar to polenta, cut into cubes and fried in olive oil. On board Costa Cruises they can be savored as an accompaniment to vegetable soup. Ready for more (culinary) tours in the Mediterranean? I can’t wait to savor other first courses on boat.