Chef Debbie Frangipane lives and breaths love and life into every dish she creates. She has shared her culinary passion with others on her travels around Italy as Executive Chef and Culinary Director for Savory Adventures, as a television chef and in her soon to be released cookbook.
1. When did your love of cooking begin?
I can’t remember not being in love with any and everything in the kitchen. If I had to pin down a year where it began, I would say around 7 years old. My mother had returned to school and was working and my father worked swing shift, so I picked up the responsibility for cooking for the 4 kids and mom and dad a big part of the time.
2. Who inspired you ?
Being from the South, it’s without a doubt from my grandmother (mammaw) on my mother’s side was the major influence, I don’t think I have memories of her without being in the kitchen, apron on (I actually have one of them to this day as well as well as her cast iron skillet that she and now I fry chicken in) and kitchen towel on her shoulder. I also developed a ton from my other grandmother and her tremendous garden. For my Italian cuisine, definitely my husband’s mother who has handed down tons of recipes from generations of her family.
3. What is your favorite method of food preparation and why?
I have to choose ONE?!?!?! I’m so in love with every aspect of the kitchen and get bored easily, so depending on what I find at the market and my mood for the day, you never know if you’ll find me roasting, frying, sauteing or grilling. I truly love doing it all!
4. Is there a region or culture whose culinary style you prefer? Why?
Well, as far as a region, it’s a toss up between traditional southern cuisine and Italian cuisine, as they are both a huge part of my roots and heritage. There are similar comfort food emotions involved in each. As far as a culinary style, I also love the traditional French cuisine as I love a challenge, to recreate perfection is a challenge that never ends or grows old for me. On the immediate future though, I am diving into molecular gastronomy.
5. What is your favorite main course recipe?
There is truly not a way for me to choose one. I really do change daily on what this may be. At the moment it’s a toss up between creating new combinations for risotto which is one of my all time favorites and I love trying to create fresh summer inspired recipes for a traditionally fall and winter dish. At the moment number two in line would probably be paella, this one is all about stepping out of my comfort zone and finding new exciting twists on how to prepare this classic cuisine.
6. What’s in your ultimate dessert?
Goat Cheese Truffles
7. Including any person(s) living or deceased ~Who would be seated at your ‘fantasy’ dinner table?
8. What tips do you have for budding chefs who are new to social media?
Keep it from the heart, when you are passionate about something, food in particular, and do it with conviction and from your soul, you’ll come out a winner every time.
9. We’re all about exploring new places, people & foods. What’s on YOUR bucket list?
Cooking with Eric Rupert at Le Bernardin
RECIPE: Fettuccine Alfredo
Fettuccine Alfredo was invented at Alfredo’s restaurant in Rome, and is now a favorite worldwide. When I am in Piemonte in the fall, I enhance this dish with fresh shavings of the rare white truffle. – Debbie
Ingredients At a glance
Pasta Dishes and Sauces
2 Tablespoons butter
¾ cup heavy whipping cream
1 pound fresh fettuccine
1 cup grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese, firmly packed
Begin boiling water in a pot large enough to support your pasta, generally a 3-4 quart pot. Once the water begins boiling, add 1 to 1-1/2 teaspoons of salt to the water, BEFORE adding the pasta. Taste the water for salt, you should be able to taste the salt without it being overpowering.
While waiting for the water to come to a boil, place the butter and ½ cup of the whipped cream in a pan (large enough to hold the pasta later). Cook on medium heat just until the butter has melted and blends with the cream when stirred. Remove from the burner.
Boil the fettuccine just until it is almost “al dente”. For fresh fettuccine this should take about one minute. For dry fettuccine, this is usually a few minutes less than the time listed on the box. Drain.
Add the pasta to the butter and cream mixture and stir to ensure that the fettuccine is well coated.
Turn the heat on low, and stir in the cheese, the remaining cream, salt to taste, a bit of freshly ground pepper, and a hint of fresh grated nutmeg.
Serve immediately in warm bowls, and add additional grated parmesan on top just before serving.
For this and more GREAT recipes from Chef Debbie Frangipane go to: SavoryAdventures.com