Italian Food Safari opens with a celebration of the wood-fired oven, which many Italians constructed in their backyards when they arrived in Australia. Maeve visits the inspiring Ricupero family who settled in Jarrahdale outside Perth where they grow vegetables on a large scale and bake 140 loaves of bread every 2 weeks in the huge oven they built themselves – the crunchy on the outside, soft on the inside pane di casa so adored by Italians.
Guy then shows a recipe for delicious bruschetta, using day-old bread. Guy joins olive oil producer Joe Grilli from Primo Estate in McLaren Vale at harvest time and learns about mixing oils for the perfect blend. Vongole harvester Tony Petruzzelli takes us to work as he rakes waist-deep in water off Adelaide’s Outer Harbour then Sydney chef Eugenio Maiale cooks up the classic spaghetti alla vongole, the one dish that he always keeps on his menu at his popular inner city restaurant A Tavola.
For sweets, the crunchy fried biscuit cannoli filled with fresh ricotta is close to heaven, especially when its made by second generation Sicilian sweets master Achille Mellini from Grossi Florentino.