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Fun Evening with Michele Scovotto from Semplice Cooking

Fun night with a young Italian chef cooking in your home? Planning a dinner party or event? The World Loves Melbourne was part of a dinner party to experience the joyful services of Semplice Cooking. Michele Scovotto from Semplice Cooking is an Italian chef who came to Melbourne in recent months. His passion is Italian cooking and sharing the joys of his culture. This was a fun evening with Michele and his girlfriend both upbeat and keen to please. It was home style cooking with flair and highly recommended.

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Michele and his girlfriend arrive at the home ready to roll.

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Happy days with Semplice Cooking in the home of The Prosecco Queen and partner Paul, with Paul and Lauren from The City Lane and David from The World Loves Melbourne.

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A highlight was to make the gnocchi and enjoy a rustic cheesy Italian classic.

Semplice means "simple" in Italian. This is not some stiff and starchy affair but celebrating the simple pleasures of Italian cuisine. We dined with leading Melbourne and food identities Paul and Lauren from The City Lane as well as Paul and Mel The Prosecco Queen. Michele arrived (held at the home of Mel and Paul) well prepared after giving us a choice between a Naples menu and a Rome menu. The cost for people wanting to book Michele is $50-70 a head - extremely reasonable for what you get. I would have paid more than $60 just for the food. But of course Michele is providing a fabulous service including interactive component/class, tips, and cooking and serving the meal. Plus he infuses the dinner with his upbeat personality. 

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Top notch Prosecco served from The Prosecco Queen. Check out her website and online store.

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Mel The Prosecco Queen set up the table beautifully.

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OK so there was a glass of Prosecco for the chefs.

We were also treated to Prosecco from Mel Brauer The Prosecco Queen and partner Paul. Mel runs a highly successful business importing Italian Prosecco and other wines from choice high quality suppliers. For restaurants, bars, cafes, hotels and consumers, The Prosecco Queen is the personable person for all your Italian and Australian Prosecco and wine needs.

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Michele had some pre-prepared gnocchi but we were given the task to make the rest under Michele's watchful eye.

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Showing us how to make the gnocchi.

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Making gnocchi before the first course of Aperitivo Napoletano.

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Mel Brauer The Prosecco Queen.

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Paul and Lauren from The City Lane.

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Preparing the bread for the Bruschetta pomodoro e basilico.

Aperitivo Napoletano was the first course featuring Bruschetta pomodoro e basilico, Prosciutto di Parma wrapped Grissini breadsticks, Salame Napoli and Parmigiano Reggiano with honey. A real crowd pleaser. Michele even added another dimension with his Nona's capsicum dish; absolutely delicious. The Aperitivo Napoletano Platter was perfect with apertitivo beverages; in this case we enjoyed the finest of Italian Prosecco from The Prosecco Queen.

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Assembling the Aperitivo Napoletano. 

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Stunning and delicious.

Delightful bruschetta with lightly toasted bread, prosciutto wrapped around the Grissini, quality Salami, and Michele drizzling honey all over the Parmigiano Reggiano was fabulous and a resonation around great simple Italian food! A platter shared in the middle of the table was a wonderful way of sharing and enjoying this Italian fare.

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Main course featured Gnocchi alla Sorrentina Handmade gnocchi con pomodoro, basilico and mozzarella. What a joy! Part of the fun was making gnocchi from the dough. Rub with your fingers. Add the flour. Slice and then rub again - or something like that! It was just a fun activity while we enjoyed a glass of wine. Michele finished off the dish and served up a large rustic bowl of gnocchi in the centre of the table. That's when Mel got out some Primitivo and other Australian wines with an Italian style.

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As we say, the best Italian food is simple Italian food. Gnocchi may not be a complicated dish but few get it right. Michele nailed it. He added a cheesy dimension to make it the perfect winter meal. 

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So far two excellent dishes to capture the "semplice" philosophy.

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The dessert was another crowd pleaser. Tiramisú Savioardi, mascaropone cream, caffé and cacao powder was possibly the best Tiramisu I've ever experienced. It all came together with no component overdone. The cream was a highlight in itself. Michele made a huge bowl of Tiramisu and put it once again in the middle of the table. Rather than put the Tiramisu into small dessert bowls (which we could have done) we enjoyed the Tiramisu with spoons into the bowl.

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Time for another Italian Prosecco from The Prosecco Queen.

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Good times.

Michele cleaned up with dishes (or dishwasher) which was impressive.

Michele is passionate about Italian cooking and feels his homeland has the power to combine tradition with emotions. Check out Semprice Cooking website for more information.

Michele learned all the Italian secrets from his grandma and is here to share this secrets with Australians. We heard Michele previously had a role in the corporate world with Unilever, but cooking is his passion. For a reasonable price (currently $50-$70) a head, you can have Michele come to your home and provide a full Italian experience, teaching and cooking for the menu you chose. Thanks also to Paul and Mel The Prosecco Queen and to Paul and Lauren from The City Lane. Highly recommended.