Ferragosto – Sunday lunch in Bangkok

August 17, 2010

I am not the cooking-type person. You understand what I mean. I am not patient enough to do the hard but creative work in the kitchen (except washing the dishes, I am good at that). Maybe I do not understand chemistry. But what I know is, that I love to eat well, usually not alone but in company of family and friends.

When the “family council” discussed cooking chores, it was decided that I should cook on Sunday August 15 because the next Sunday would be my birthday, and the twins wanted to cook for me. So I agreed.

Since August 15 was “Ferragosto” (the middle of August) as the Italian call it (it’s a national holiday to celebrate the Assumption of the blessed virgin Mary), the occasion warranted an Italian dish.

I choose a chicken dish (pollo alla cacciatora) from the Jamie Oliver Italian cookery book. Chicken is not my favourite meat. I might have eaten too much of it during my long years here in Asia. However, I made that choice and discovered thast there a quite a few things to do.

Jamie says you need lot’s of Chianti and this is where I started: I went to our local supermarket and selcted the wine. I choose two bottles of Chianti by Coli, one for the “soaking” of the chicken (a normal Chianti Classico) and one to accompany the meal (I decided on a 2004 Chianti Classico Riserva).

The Chianti Classico Riserva from Coli

You will find the recipe in the above book – and many other cookery books I might say. I like Jamie Oliver and his approach to Italian food. I also followed his suggestions regarding the beans and decided to add potatoes to supply the carbohydrates. The family (my private food critics) loved what I had cooked and we had a wonderful Sunday lunch.

Pollo alla cacciatore-Chicken the hunter’s way

Cannellini beans

Set for lunch

Chicken, beans and potatoes

Succulent chicken

The wine

Coli is a well known producer from Tuscany, and with a production of about 12 million bottles per year not exactly small. Because of the exorbitant wine prices in Thailand I acquired a modest quality segment. The wine was good, had great colour and medium body, though a bit “light” (12.5% vol alc.) for my taste.

Espresso, chocolate and Averna

Next Sunday it’s the young generations’ task to feed the family.
Try the “Pollo alla cacciatora”, it’s worth it.