Roasted Pepper Eggplant and Cheese Terrine – Cooking in a Chianti castle

Meleto Castle

Castello di Meleto

 

The Rustico Cooking Chianti Culinary Tour was the ultimate cooking experience.  For five days, our tour group attended hands-on culinary courses in the kitchen of the enchanting Castello di Meleto (Meleto Castle).    This magnificent castle, surrounded with cypress trees and junipers, is located in the town of  Gaiole, in the central Chianti region of Tuscany, Italy.  Roasted Pepper Eggplant and Cheese Terrine was one of the dishes we prepared in one of the courses.

 

Roasted Pepper and Eggplant Cheese Terrine

Roasted Pepper and Eggplant Cheese Terrine

 

We stayed at a villa up the hill from Castello Meleto.  In the morning, we would meet for breakfast at the castle and then gather in the kitchen for our cooking courses to prepare rustic Italian dishes and desserts taught by Micol Negrin and her husband Dino DeAngelis of Rustico Cooking.

Castello Meleto villa

Castello Meleto villa

Meleto Castle kitchen

Meleto Castle kitchen

 

Every morning Micol distributed copies of the recipes we would make for that day. We were split into groups and assigned different recipes. Throughout the course, we would switch groups to participate and learn how to prepare each dish. Once we finished cooking, we brought the plates of food outside and placed them on long tables where we would serve ourselves buffet style.
Lunch at Castello Meleto

Lunch at Castello Meleto

We sat down at a long table under a gazebo (the Tuscan sun is hot, hot, at noon) and savoured the fruits of our labour while drinking wine and overlooking the breath-taking view of the Tuscan vineyards and Cypress trees. The afternoons were spent sight-seeing in Chianti.
La dolce vita indeed!

 

Dining al fresco at Castello Meleto

Dining al fresco at Castello Meleto

 

 

Celebrating lunch at Castello Meleto

A toast to the cooks and great food!

 

View from Castello Meleto

View of the vineyard and Cyprus tress from Castello Meleto.

The Roasted Pepper Eggplant and Cheese Terrine recipe was easy to prepared.  The texture is well balanced with the roasted vegetables and cheeses.  The basil infused olive oil gives it the final touch.

Roasted Pepper Eggplant and Cheese Terrine - Cooking in Chianti
 
Roasted Pepper Eggplant and Cheese Terrine is a vegetarian dish that can be served for brunch, lunch or supper as the main course or side dish.
Author:
Recipe type: vegetarian
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 12
Ingredients
For the vegetables:
  • 6 large red bell peppers, halved, stemmed, and seeded
  • 6 large yellow bell peppers, halved, stemmed, and seeded
  • 3 large eggplants, cut into long, thin slices (no more than ⅛-inch-thick)
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
For the Mascarpone and Ricotta filling:
  • 1 pound Mascarpone cheese (preferably imported Italian)
  • pound whole-milk Ricotta
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup fresh basil leaves
  • 1 cup fresh Italian parsley leaves
For the basil oil:
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup basil leaves
To serve:
  • 4 cups baby greens
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 ripe plum tomatoes, diced
Instructions
  1. Preheat the broiler.
  2. Arrange the peppers, cut side down, on the baking sheet.
  3. Remove from the oven and cool to room temperature.
  4. Prepare the Mascarpone and Ricotta Filling:
  5. Combine the Mascarpone, Ricotta, salt, and pepper until smooth in a bowl. Line 2 terrine molds with plastic wrap. Arrange some of the eggplants on the bottom of each terrine.
  6. Top with some of the Mascarpone mixture, spreading it with the back of a spoon, then cover with a layer of peppers, a layer of parsley, and a layer of basil.
  7. Repeat until you finish all the ingredients; the top layer should be eggplant.
  8. Enclose in the plastic wrap and press with your hands to compact the ingredients so they hold together better when sliced.
  9. Refrigerate up to 24 hours.
  10. Prepare the basil oil:
  11. Place all the ingredients in a blender and process until almost smooth.
  12. How to Serve the Roasted Pepper, Eggplant & Cheese Terrine:
  13. Toss the greens with the olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper.
  14. Arrange on each of 12 plates.
  15. Unwrap the terrine.
  16. Cut into thin slices and arrange on top of the greens.
  17. Drizzle with the basil oil and garnish with the diced tomatoes.
  18. Serve immediately.

 

This is the first installment of a series of posts and recipes about my culinary trip to Chianti.  Stay tuned!

 

Umbria and Tuscany Culinary Tour

Strangozzi with truffle sauce – cooking in Spoleto, Umbria

Artichoke Flan in truffle sauce – Spoleto, Umbria

 

 

Permission to print the Roasted Pepper, Eggplant & Cheese Terrine recipe was granted by Micol Negrin of Rustico Cooking.

Micol Negrin is the author of The Italian Grill: Fresh Ideas to Fire Up Your Outdoor Cooking and  Rustico: Regional Italian Country Cooking.

 

Disclaimer:

This post contains affiliated links.

 

 

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6 Responses to Roasted Pepper Eggplant and Cheese Terrine – Cooking in a Chianti castle

  1. Evelyne@cheapethniceatz August 13, 2013 at 4:13 pm #

    What a beautiful place, how lucky. The recipe looks awesome as well.
    Evelyne@cheapethniceatz recently posted…Gastronomie à l’amérindienne, a Native American mealMy Profile

  2. A Canadian Foodie August 14, 2013 at 2:35 pm #

    There is nothing I like more than taking cooking classes when I travel! This looks gorgeous! Bravo!
    :)
    V
    A Canadian Foodie recently posted…Nanking Cherry JellyMy Profile

  3. bellini August 28, 2013 at 2:20 am #

    Taking cooking classes when we travel is one of the best ways to meet the locals and venture head first into their cuisine. It sounds like you had a memorable experience.
    bellini recently posted…Perfected White Wedding Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Buttercream Icing for My Daughters ShowerMy Profile

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