NSW Education LIVE – Matt Preston, Manu Feildel and Gary Mehigan

Duration – 18:45

TV foodies Matt Preston, Manu Feildel and Gary Mehigan teach a quick and easy cooking class.

Transcript

Gary Mehigan

Hi kids, It's Gary Mehigan, Matt Preston, and Manu Feildel and welcome really to all the kids from NSW public schools for learning from home.

And we thought to get you excited about food we'd do a little cooking class of our own.

What do you reckon fellas?

Matt Preston

We love food, we think a great thing to learn is to cook, so we're gonna make something very simple.

It's one of Australia's most favourite dishes and it's spaghetti carbonara.

So, spaghetti carbonara is pasta with a sauce of bacon, cheese and eggs.

It's super simple, it takes about as long to make as it does to cook the pasta but we're gonna fancy it up, 'cause I do have one of the best chefs in the world with me right now.

Gary Mehigan

Ta-da (laughs).

And the other best chef in the world, Manu.

Manu Feildel

Well you boys have made main course, but I'm making dessert, and it's chocolate mousse.

Matt Preston

Chocolate mouse?

Gary Mehigan

I think he said chocolate mouse.

Matt Preston

Chocolate mouse?

Manu Feildel

It's Chocolate Mousse, and it's the greatest dessert in France.

Matt Preston

So Gary, what do you need for your fresh pasta?

Gary Mehigan

Yeah, so 200 grams of flour in my blender, I put a little pinch of salt. I'm gonna put a dash of oil, and this is fancy extra virgin oil, 'cause it gives lots of flavour but you don't need to use that, you can just use a normal, plain olive oil. And then two whole eggs. And then we're gonna pop the lid on the blender or if you're making this by hand you would just mix it up.

And blend it until you get a nice soft crumb or if you're doing it by hand, mix it until you get a nice smooth dough.

(blender whirls)

How's it going Manu?

Manu Feildel

Well it is one of the easiest recipe to make and the most delicious, and I'll go through the ingredients because it's real easy.

I've got dark chocolate here, I've got sugar, I've got eggs, I have got butter and that's pretty much it, really.

So, what do we need to do is we need to melt the chocolate first. Double boiler, is a little bit of water in the bottom of the pan with a bowl.

And all you need to do is break the chocolate in the bowl like this. So, here I've got 150 grams of dark chocolate. What I love about dark chocolate is it's a little sweet but a little bitter as well, which is delicious.

And into this I'm going to put 40 grams of butter, melt it together on the stove, so it will be nice and glossy.

Gary Mehigan

Right, so we've blended that until we get the texture of bread crumbs, but it's still nice and moist. This is where the hard work comes in, but it needs a little bit of kneading. Get that one? All you do is push it down with the kind of chubby part of your hand, which is at the bottom here, and you push it away from you and then you give it a little turn, about 180 degrees, so all the way around and you keep pushing it down, turning it around, pushing it down, turning it around.

And it will take about two to three minutes and you'll see at the moment it's quite kind of crumbly and coarse, but the more you knead it, the more elastic, and what you're actually doing is developing the gluten in the flour. And it becomes a little more stretchy and a little smoother every time you turn and push.

And you really gotta get your shoulders into it.

Matt Preston

What sort of student were you at school, Gary? Were you a goody two shoes or were you a bad kid?

Gary Mehigan

You know what? I loved school.

Everybody is going, "nerd!". But I loved sport – that was my thing. I used to play rugby, I played football, I swam, I did all sorts of things, I loved that.

What kind of student were you?

Matt Preston

I loved history, I loved geography, I loved maths, I loved English. I was rubbish at chemistry, I was rubbish at biology (laughs).

Gary Mehigan

(laughs)

Matt Preston

Look I enjoyed it, but I still got into a certain amount of trouble. I nearly got expelled once.

Gary Mehigan

No?

Matt Preston

But I won't tell you that story.

Manu, how about you? What sort of student were you?

Manu Feildel

Well, what I liked about school is I wasn't there for a long time. I was very excited to go and start working. So, I started working at 15, boys, that's why I'm a very good chef today.

But in school I loved playing with my friends really, that's be it.

Matt Preston

Does that surprise you Gary?

Gary Mehigan

No, and you know what? He's exactly the same now as he was back then. (chuckling)

Matt Preston

I know.

Gary Mehigan

All right, so look, see our dough is just starting to become nice and smooth. And as I'm kneading it, you can actually feel it changing and that's why I love cooking.

What's important is you leave that for about 20 minutes to let it rest, and in that resting process strangely, lots happen, the dough softens, I think, you know, oil in the recipe and the eggs in the recipe really start, you know, penetrating into that flour.

And when you pick that back up in 20 minutes and give it another knead, the texture changes, the feeling changes completely.

Matt Preston

Okay, I'm just gonna talk you through the sauce, very simple. Carbonara is grated cheese and eggs, and then with something like bacon to give it some flavour. So, I've fried the bacon, that's there. I've got five eggs, I've got cheese.

Now traditionally it needs to be that I use pecorino or a parmesan like this, but honestly you could use just plain old tasty.

In fact, there's a little secret I'll let you into, everyone thinks carbonara should be made with Italian ingredients like pecorino and guanciale. But the first carbonaras where probably made with rations out of the America G.I.'s, who landed in the Second World War at Anzio, and they would have used Canadian bacon and American cheese, so really any cheese and bacon will do.

What have your got there?

Gary Mehigan

I'm plugging in a different gadget.

(whirling)

Oh, and it is a very fancy pasta machine. But this changed my life, this thing, because you can buy little pasta machines for about 50 dollars, they're really cheap now and basically this is a little roller and you pass – rather than using a rolling pin – you pass the pasta through the rollers again and again until you get the texture and the thickness that you want.

If it's a little manual machine, you just have to use a bit of muscle power but if it's one of these fancy machines, no sweat. You like that? Gee, I'm lazy aren't I?

Matt Preston

Yeah, but also it's really easy to make, it's really easy to make pasta by hand.

So, once you've got that recipe that Gary's shown you, now you can roll that out on a flat surface.

Take a nugget of it, roll it on a flat surface, roll it thin. If you want to put a sheet of baking paper over the top to stop the dough sticking if it's a bit wet.

And can I grab it?

Gary Mehigan

Yeah, grab it.

Matt Preston

Even if you just roll it, you've got what's called laminated pasta or you can make what's called pici, which you can make them in a number of different ways but you can literally roll the dough in your hands like this and make a kinda green bean shape of pasta.

And literally, you drop that into boiling water and it will take about two minutes to cook and it's really easy.

Gary Mehigan

So, but I'm going to show you this. I'm going to put the machine on the widest setting and we're gonna do what's called laminating the pasta.

So, I'll do that a few more times until I get the right texture.

Matt Preston

All right, so what I've done is I've put five eggs in here and about double the amount of grated cheese. I've used equal parts tasty and parmesan. I've also slipped in some chives

I'll use the rest to garnish on the top, that makes it look pretty. And then a little bit of black pepper is needed.

Gary Mehigan

Beautiful, that looks good.

Matt Preston

You know, it's such a simple and it's gonna cook really quickly. It's a bit like making scrambled eggs, you don't want to cook it hard and rubbery, you want to cook the eggs gently, so what we're gonna do is basically, we're gonna put the sauce on the hot pasta.

The heat of the pasta will just cook the eggs to that point where the eggs are cooked, so the proteins in the eggs will set at 70 degrees. So what do you wanna go about 64 degrees?

So basically, you'll find the pasta gets beautifully silky with this covering of this kind of egg mixture.

Gary Mehigan

And creamy without having cream which is what most people think carbonara is. In fact most people think carbonara's got mushrooms in too.

Matt Preston

Or onions, totally wrong.

Gary Mehigan

Or onions, but we don't mind what you do 'cause essentially you can whisk you eggs, grate some cheese in and then if you want to put other stuff in then you can put it in.

And that bacon looks lovely but if you don't eat bacon.

Matt Preston

Corn will be good.

Gary Mehigan

What about Manu?

Manu, what would you put in?

Manu Feildel

I don't know, maybe some green beans, some French beans, you know the long one. It's nice and healthy.

Gary Mehigan

'Cause then if you want to add greens and you could put spinach, you could put broccoli, you can put anything in and then it's gonna be super nutritious.

Matt Preston

You know what, 'cause I can read your mind and Manu's mind after we've being filming together, I've got some green beans over there. Maybe you want to show all the kids just what part of the bean to chop up.

Gary Mehigan

Ah yeah. So, with the bean, you just pick one end and often you'll find if they're really, a little bit old, they're a bit stringy. So, you pick one end, I don't pick the end, the other end but you can, all right. So, you just pick that little bit where essentially it's hanging from the vine.

Matt Preston

You can see it there, can't you?

You can see that little stem there, that's what you want to take off.

Gary Mehigan

And these are so young they're fine.

And then you know a little secret about cutting is that you've got to think of it as almost like a claw and you're pinching something and trying to pick it up.

You know like this, because what you don't want is your fingers to stick out and if I do it this way you'll see what I mean. Just put two beans together and what you do is, you put your knife next to your fingers and then you can cut it.

Matt Preston

Just while you're doing that, what I'm going to do is I'll fry these green beans in a bit of butter and oil. I've got some spring onions that we've cut into coins, it's about the same size as the green beans I've also got some frozen corn.

Gary Mehigan

Right, so remember we rolled our pasta out just a little bit, now we're gonna get thinner and thinner. So, let's turn this on and then we've reduced the number on the machine, which means we've brought the rollers together a little bit more. Which means the pasta gets thinner.

Matt Preston

So, how thick do you want it, I mean if I was going to hand roll it, it doesn't have to be so thin you can see right through it?

Gary Mehigan

Yeah, because you want it to have some texture and certainly when you're making it at home, I don't mind having a thicker pasta.

If I went to a restaurant and it's all fancy, you'd almost want to see your fingers through it but I might put that through one more time and that's pretty close, right?

Matt Preston

Yeah, this looks pretty good, it's so, what I love about it, if you just give it a pull you can see how the gluten's developed. So, you can actually, that's beautiful Gary, really nice.

Gary Mehigan

Lovely, so one more time.

(whirling)

Matt Preston

How you going with your mousse Manu, you all right?

Manu Feildel

Boys, I'm missing an egg, have you got an egg please?

Matt Preston

Here you go. All right, you ready Manu.

Gary Mehigan

Oh my goodness, will you catch it? Ah!

Manu Feildel

Thank you.

Let me show you a little trick that I do with my recipe, before you crack the eggs you've gotta juggle with it. All right, so you need five eggs. That's the best job, cracking, so all you have to do is crack on the edge of the chopping board and then split it. And go back and forth, back and forth like this, so you got the egg white on one side and the egg yolk on the other.

What I'm going to do is put the bowl into the machine and I'm gonna grab a pinch of salt, because the salt helps the egg white to break and then it will foam quicker.

So, just a little pinch like this and then I'm going to start it. Medium speed first, until it foam and then I'm going to add 100 grams of sugar and then spin it faster.

(whirling)

Gary Mehigan

Can I show you the next fancy bit here? So, I've rolled my pasta out into sheets, I've cut them so they're manageable lengths.

And then I've got another little fancy cutter that goes onto my pasta machine. And again if you have a hand roller, it's exactly the same, the pieces are exactly the same. And then watch this, beautiful.

In goes the pasta, out comes tagliatelle. How's that? Looks beautiful.

Matt Preston

Oh, that's good Gary and it's lovely.

Gary Mehigan

You know what's lovely about fresh pasta is you can just boil that for two minutes and it will be delicious, just with a little olive oil and grated cheese.

What are you doing next Matt?

Matt Preston

What I've done is I've taken the beans and the spring onions, I've fried those two together.

Gary Mehigan

And how's the mousse going?

Manu Feildel

So, both the egg whites are just starting to foam, so now I'm gonna speed it up and add the sugar to it until it's peaky.

(whirling)

Matt Preston

Okay, your water's boiling, that pasta's gonna take how long Gaz?

Gary Mehigan

Well, two to three minuted at the most.

Matt Preston

I think we're pretty much there.

Manu Feildel

See, here we go. So, hard peak means this. That's what you want. Mm-hhm.

Gary Mehigan

All right, pasta's ready to come out, so just to check it, we just want to lift a piece out and this is the age old method of checking whether your pasta's cooked Matt, is actually just have a piece. Whoa, it's lovely too.

Bit of olive oil and then we're just gonna lift that pasta out of the,

'cause you want some of the water don't you?

Matt Preston

A little bit of it will be good.

Gary Mehigan

Beautiful. You can just toss that over and that is ready to go into your eggs.

Matt Preston

How's that mousse going Manu?

All right, look at this.

Manu Feildel

This is now the melted chocolate with the butter. See how nice and soft that is. Just combine it together and just kind of cool it down because we're gonna have to put the egg yolk into this and if you put the egg yolks into the hot chocolate the egg yolks gonna kind of solidify and cook, so that's not what you want, okay.

Look at this, aww. See it's carbonara vs chocolate, come on. I'm winning on this one.

Gary Mehigan

Oh, Matt, look at that chocolate, that is silky smooth and beautiful.

Manu Feildel

All right, chocolate is a little cooler now, so I'm going to be able to add the egg yolks, so five egg yolks. Five egg whites, five egg yolks. And just mix them in properly and nicely like this. There we go.

All right, so we just ready to assemble the chocolate and egg white to make the chocolate mousse not mouse.

All right so, what I'm going to do is, I'm going to use half of the egg whites into the chocolate.

Gary Mehigan

Why are you doing that Manu?

Manu Feildel

Well you mix half of the egg whites first, so you can mix the chocolate properly but then the second half, it's like nice and gentle. So, you can keep the air into the egg whites. And then you add this to the rest of the egg white.

Gary Mehigan

Over to you Matt.

Matt Preston

Yeah, thank you Gaz.

Gaz, can you drain that water so I have a hot pan please.

Gary Mehigan

Yes.

Matt Preston

Could you then also pass me the green bowl I've washed up magically?

Can you slide the green bowl down please?

Gary Mehigan

Green bowl.

Matt Preston

Thank you, thank you. All right so, green beans done. Okay, you've got the bowl here. All right, bowl. So, the bowl's still warm from the pasta, for the sauce.

We're gonna put a little bit of our mixture in here, we're then gonna throw in our beautifully made tagliatelle and we're gonna swirl it round like this, okay.

Oh, that smells unbelievably good.

Gary Mehigan

But can you see it? That's the question.

Matt Preston

A little bit more of the sauce. Here you go Brenda, how about that? Look at that. Have a look in there, can you see that? So, we're just gonna basically, everyone comes to the table now.

This is the time you want everyone to come to the table, because this is going to be cooked in a couple of minutes time.

If you feel like you want to get that bit more cooked, you can pop it back on a low heat and keep going but you can see how silky it's starting to look.

Gary Mehigan

It's looking good, that pasta is excellent. Hang on a minute, hang on a minute, that smells cheesy and saucy and beautiful.

Matt Preston

All right, so pasta in the middle of the plate and then we'll give it a little bit of a twirl.

Gary Mehigan

How's it going Manu?

Manu Feildel

Almost there. So, now I'm going to put this chocolate mousse in glasses and then I'm going to rest it in the fridge for a couple of hours, so it sets a little bit more. So it's ready to eat too.

Gary Mehigan

I think he's nearly done. It looks really soft.

Matt Preston

Oh it's fantastic.

Gary Mehigan

All right, do you know what I would do? I would have a few beans, because they're beautiful. Do you want some?

Matt Preston

I'm gonna have bacon and corn.

Gary Mehigan

Can I have bacon too?

Matt Preston

Yes of course.

Gary Mehigan

Bacon and beans for me, bacon and corn for you and I'm gonna have a little extra cheese.

Manu Feildel

Oh my god, I hope you're having some salad with that, boys.

Gary Mehigan

Of course, of course we're eating our fruit and vegetables, our essential five for the day and a lovely crisp, crunchy delicious salad.

Manu Feildel

Well I've got to say boys, that, that carbonara look delicious but now it's time for chocolate dessert, the mousse.

All I want to do now is grate a little bit of chocolate over the top of it, just for presentation.

(grating)

And it looks good. Look at that.

(tapping)

Let's have a go. Mm, it's so sweet, bitter from the chocolate, soft, airy, moussy, hhm.

Matt Preston

That is insanely good.

Gary Mehigan

That's proper good, isn't it?

Matt Preston

How delicious is that? It's genuinely delicious.

Gary Mehigan

Yeah, bit of bacon a few beans, I've got cheese, bacon, beans and I love it. And I think you know what, the lesson here is have a bit of fun. You can make bits of the dish or all of the dish.

You can use dry pasta, you can make fresh pasta, you can just make fresh pasta and put cheese and olive oil on it and what we want you to do, have a bit of fun and help feed the family, get involved, don't you think?

Because if you cook, then you care.

Matt Preston

I love that and I think that's the whole idea, you know, they will find lots of recipes online for carbonara, play with it. I mean cook for someone, you know.

You gotta remember your parents are gonna be doing it tough at the moment, so help them out, offer to do stuff.

And remember it's your job to clean up the kitchen.

Gary Mehigan

Who's washing up?

Matt Preston

I've got a chemistry class, I've got to go. I've got to go, it's honestly, it's Professor Stevenson, honestly I've got to.

Leave me some washing up to do, I'll do some, I'll dry up, I'll put it all away, honestly I'll help.

Gary Mehigan

Manu, can you believe it, always the same.

End of transcript.

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