Italian Food Secret N°7: Friuli Venezia Giulia

July 04th 2012 by Giulia

The best dishes? The ones that make you feel good!

Italian Chef Interview - Miramare Castle, TriesteItalian Chef Interview - Miramare Castle, Trieste
Credits: Chiara Marra

Andrea Gabin is the 7th Charming Italian Chef that I have the pleasure to interview to discover the main Italian food secrets. He is from Udine, in the Friuli Venezia Giulia region, where he started off by helping his mother in the kitchen: «When I think about my mother’s cuisine, I’m still pleasantly surprised about her homemade recipes and perfect methods!».

Andrea studied at the Hotel School IAL-CISL of Aviano and got his first job in Switzerland when he was only 17 years old. He did several internships and worked as Chef and Executive Chef in Rome, Venice, Porto Cervo, Siena and even in London.
Italian CHIC Interview: Chef Andrea GabinItalian CHIC Interview: Chef Andrea Gabin
But what happened in the middle of his brilliant career? Andrea Gabin had a doubt. He needed a break from the world of food! Just a year, to understand that working with his father as a builder was not his future, even if he learnt a strong life lesson: "It does not matter what you do, but how you do it and, above all, my life is in the kitchen!"

Thanks to his great life and work experiences, the Chef Andrea Gabin is able to offer a perfect mix of traditional recipes and creativity, and new dishes are always inspired by his north Italian region, Friuli Venezia Giulia.

italian CHIC interview: Chef Andrea Gabinitalian CHIC interview: Chef Andrea Gabin

His Restaurant, La Mondina, is close to Milan and the atmosphere is characterized by cozy and welcoming elegance and refined with artistic details… as is his cuisine!

To have an idea of Andrea Gabin’s ability try one of his masterpieces:

Breast and thigh of quail, poached eggs and liver Cjalsons (Cjalsons are a kind of filled pasta like tortelli).

Ingredients for the quail
4 Quails
2 Dried Figs
½ Onion
1 Potato
100 gr pork’s caul fat Chopped parsley, salt and pepper to taste
Olive oil

Debone the quails and separate the thighs from the breast. Heat the oil and add the onion, the potatoes and the dried figs. Fry till golden and add salt and pepper to taste. Stuff the quail and wrap it into the caul fat. Put into a sealable plastic bag, add olive oil and squeeze out the air before closing the bag. Cook for 25 minutes in the oven at 63 ° C; till to brown on both sides.

Ingredients for liver Cjalsons
For the pasta
300 gr "00" Flour
170 gr Water
5 gr salt

Combine all ingredients and mix well, add the salt. Let the dough rest for about an hour.
Italian CHIC Interview: TortelliItalian CHIC Interview: Tortelli
For the filling
The livers of the 4 quails
150 gr chicken liver
1 bay leaf
1 Shallot
10 cl Ramandolo wine
½ PearSultana and cinnamon to taste
30° Baume syrup, Cinnamon to taste (or sugar syrup)
Butter, salt and pepper to taste

Heat the butter and add the shallot. Fry till golden, add the livers and the bay leaf and cook till all liquid has evaporated. Add the salt, the pepper and the wine and leave to evaporate. Remove the bay leaf and blend everything with a blender. Cook the pear for 12 minutes in the oven at 65 ° C; in a sealable plastic bag, together with the sugar syrup and the cinnamon. Cool the pear to on ice. Then cut it into little cubes and add them to the liver. Cut the dough as tortelli and stuff the cjalsons. Cook in salted water.

Ingredients to the parsley cream
50 gr Olive oil
100 gr Parsley leaves
100 gr Vegetable broth
50 gr Potatoes
½ Onion
Salt and pepper to taste

Cut the onion into julienne strips and fry in a saucepan till golden, be careful not to cook it too much. Cook the potatoes into the vegetable broth and add them to the pan. Add salt, pepper and, at the end, the parsley leaves. Blend everything with a blender.

How to serve the dish
Put some drops of the parsley cream onto a dish, put the quail in the middle and some cjalsons all around it. Sprinkle with fresh herbs and a little extra virgin olive oil. If it is oil from Friuli, it will be better!

A special thanks to
Andrea Gabin and Restaurant La Mondina
CHIC’s association
Stefania Miglio

In case you missed the last Chic Interviews, take a look to our previous posts: discover the secret regional recipes of LiguriaLazioPiemonte PugliaEmilia Romagna and Marche! After a short Summer break, we'll return with the others Chefs Interview: in the meantime, try your true culinary experience at home at keep us informed!

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Italian Food Secret N°7: Friuli Venezia Giulia