Many years ago I went to a fancy restaurant in my home town and they served us an edible parmesan basked filled with a scrumptious risotto. I can recall precisely the risotto I ate that day, a delicious white wine risotto, but mostly I remember how fancy looked to me that handmade edible “container”, so elegant and simple at the same time. Not to mention that that crispy parmesan basket melted slowly with the heat of the food contained in it, giving to the risotto an extraordinary taste. So, of course I had to try to make that delicatessen at home and surprisingly I found out that it is not tricky nor difficult to be done! All you need is parmesan cheese: just bake one cup of finely grated parmesan cheese for few minutes, and the magic is done! You can make this container to serve any kind of food, like a pasta, risotto, chilly or whatever you like, and the result will be astonishing and delicious! Indeed, as I already told you, once you pour a hot food in the cheese basket, it melts the bottom, so the food will get all the flavor of the cheese… Considering we are less than a month away from Valentine’s day, why don’t planning to surprise your significant half with a romantic dinner with such an easy – but impressive- first course?
INGREDIENTS FOR 1 EDIBLE BASKET
1 cup finely grated parmesan cheese
1 serving white wine risotto
In case you wish to fill your edible basket with white wine risotto, consider that the risotto needs to be prepared at the exact time you want to eat it. Follow the recipe here and to make sure to cook it at perfection, read these precious tips: “the ten golden rules for a perfect risotto“.
About the basket (you can easily bake at least two baskets at the time), you can even decide to prepare it ahead of time: it will keep its shape better if totally cooled off. Don’t worry: your basket will quickly get warm once you pour in it a hot entrée.
Cut a 9″ by 9” piece of parchment paper and arrange it in an oven sheet. Spread evenly 1 cup of finely grated parmesan cheese. Bake at 360 F. (180 C.) for about 5 minutes or until it starts bubbling.
Take it out of the oven and wait a few minutes until it starts solidify. At this point place it on top of a small cup, to help it get its shape. I used four glasses for each corner, to give the cup a nice shape.
Fill It with an entrée of your choice and… Enjoy! And don’t forget to eat the basket as well ;-)!
LEARNT IT, MADE IT, LOVED IT!
TIPS: – If by chance your first attempt would fail, do not despair: keep the pieces of baked parmesan aside to decorate the top of your entrée once served.
– Hypothetically you could use any kind of grated cheese for the basket, like Pecorino or Romano cheese.
– Once flipped, the basket tends to open up: do not worry, it will look nice once filled with food.
– About the filling, just remember to pick an entrée that would taste fine with the aftertaste of cheese. For instance, I would avoid any sea food entrée.
– I tried to panfry the parmesan instead of baking it, but unfortunately the melted cheese wouldn’t keep the shape.