Your revamped Regional Extra
FLAVOUR, family and fun – these are some of the key elements to King Valley resident Katrina Pizzini’s passion for food.
Famous throughout the region for her culinary creations, particularly gnocchi, Katrina’s affinity for cooking and the skills she has learned will be showcased at Pizzini Wines’ Gnocchi Carnevale during this weekend’s La Dolce Vita celebration.
“My mum and dad shared the cooking somewhat as I grew up and then when I became part of the Pizzini family, eating became another experience,” she explained.
As a newlywed, Katrina soaked up the knowledge of her mother in law, Rosetta.
When Fred and I were first mar-ried. we lived in the granny flat at-tached to Fred's family home: she said.
'I was a sponge when it came to learning how to be a good wife, with regards to learning how to cook. garden. crochet knit etc asked questions and looked over Rosetta's shoulder constantly. She was certainly my mentor. The most valuable things I learned were how to grow a vegetable garden and how to use the wonderful herbs that Rosetta used to flavour her food.
'I learned the simple cooking techniques that added flavour to dishes as well.
'I there was something missing. I tried to fill the gap with fresh herbs from the garden. another vegetable. or spice:
Over the years Katrina has honed her cooking skills and often teaches them as part cf her A Tavolar cook-ing classes
'Cooking good food is an art form. it is a chance to be creative. it is a chance to constantly learn: she said. 'I always wanted to be a teacher. and I believe that recipes and tech-niques should be passed on. 'People have been so generous with me in the past with sharing their knowledge. so it is great to have the opportunity to give to others: When it comes to making gnoc-chi. Katrina said the right ingredient and skill are essential. She uses potatoes grown by her husband Fred. mainly Dutch Cream and Nicola varieties, as the base in-gredient noting that homegrown potatoes are 'quite sweet. and much more flavoursome. as well as being drier and easier to roll.
The secret to making good gnoc-chi is having a good recipe. lovely dry potatoes and be mindful not to overwork the mixture and not to be heavy handed: Katrina said. Homegrown ingredients are cen-tral to her cooking. with Fred also growing garlic on the property, as well as the tomatoes for her bottles of passata. 'The sweetness and acidity in the tomatoes is perfect' Katrina said. “We just add a little salt. “You can drink it like tomato juice,and makes the most amazing bolognaise.”
Katrina said the La Dolce Vita celebration is a special time of year in the King Valley.
“The weather is starting to warm up, the gardens and vineyards are looking amazing and it is a great time to showcase the King Valley,” she said.
“Pizzini Wines espouses generous hospitality, we make the dishes that we love to eat, using age old recipes and techniques."
Pizzini Wines’ Gnocchi Carnevale includes homemade gnocchi for visitors to sample, and a gnocchi rolling competition each day, among a range of other activities, wine tasting, and entertainment.
La Dolce Vita is being held at wineries throughout the King Valley this weekend, November 18-19.
More information on the celebration is available on www. winesofthekingvalley.com.au/events/la-dolce-vita/, or Wines of the King Valley’s social media channels.
LOVE FOR FOOD: Katrina Pizzini loves creating in the kitchen and sharing the knowledge gathered from a lifetime of cooking with others.
SHARING: Katrina Pizzini sharing her love of gnocchi making with visitors to the winery.