Interview with Olga Bussinello, Director of Consorzio Tutela Vini della Valpolicella

anteprima_it_vmOnly two weeks ago the Amarone 2012 was presented. What is your feeling and how it was received by the public? The audience always participates with enthusiasm to  this sort of “baptism” as the Amarone enters the market. In the two days at Gran Guardia in Verona, people can meet the companies of the territory, and not only they can choose the Amarone that they prefer but also learn more about the heritage of a wine, its life and characteristics. We must never forget the importance of the relationship and empathy between the wine companies and the wine enthusiast, and when it is established the result is a great loyalty. An event like Anteprima Amarone builds a stable and strong relationship between the great red wines of Valpolicella and international consumers.

Olga BussinelloWhat aspects of the wines of Valpolicella affecting consumers and international markets? The common denominator between an international brand such as Amarone, which is the spearhead of the production and the Valpolicella, which is the most simple wine of our winemaking pyramid, is the territory. The uniqueness of the vineyard from which we produce 4 different wines, the aromatic differences linked to the different soils and microclimates, the ability of producers to imparting a personality so recognizable and autochthonous wines made with 3 historical cultivars: Corvina, Rondinella and corvinone and a handful of other local grapes. This is the great strength of Valpolicella that can also be exploited in the challenges of the global market and this is the direction we are taking in terms of production chain.

Lasagna with sauce of roots, Pero Misso jam and blue of the Val Maira for the Ripasso Tenute Salvaterra

IMG_2746 (1)Ingredients: lasagna (pasta) 4 sheets, 2 parsnips (or 1 depending by the size), raw beet 1 (if small) or just half if large, 1turnip, jam Pero Misso, Blue Val Maira (or aged blue cheese) 50 grams, sweet gorgonzola, very soft 50 grams, milk 2.5 / 3 dl, ghee (clarified butter) 2 teaspoons, salt, black pepper, ras el hanout 1 teaspoon.

Cut with brunoise way and separately the parsnip, turnip and beet, so the cubes will be very similar in size.

Halve the turnip and add equal weight of beetroot and parsnips. Heat two pans and add ghee (a generous teaspoon per pan). Add in a pan beet greens +, the ras el hanout, salt and a pinch of pepper. In the second pan parsnip + turnip, salt and plenty of black pepper mill. Cook for a few minutes on high heat, then lower and add two tablespoons of water in each pan.

Check the cooking: the vegetables should be cooked but crunchy. Remove from heat and set aside.
Prepare the gorgonzola sauce: melt the Gorgonzola cheese in a saucepan, add the warm milk gradually. Simmer for a few minutes. Keep warm.
NOTE: If you prefer a thicker sauce and creamy you can increase the amount of blue cheese. For me it was enough as I added cubes of gorgonzola more seasoned in the preparation.

To prepare the recipe can be used as an alternative to Blue Valley Maira, other cheeses, such as the Monte Veronese Malga, another interesting Slow Food Presidium.

In a saucepan with plenty of salted water, cook the pasta for pre few minutes.
(For some types of lasagna you can skip this step and cook directly in the pan)
Preparation of lasagna: anoint with ghee the baking sheet, prepare the first layer with the roots and pear sauce, a few drops of jam Pero Misso and chunks of gorgonzola cheese. Repeat until you finish the ingredients. Finally, the last layer and the gorgonzola sauce roots. Pour (after having heated) gorgonzola fondue, making sure to cover well the sheets of lasagna.

IMG_2484 (1)Serve to bake the lasagna in without letting it dry. Bake at 190 degrees for 20-25 minutes. Check occasionally that the lasagna does not dry out too much. If add a little hot milk.

Serve immediately accompanied the lasagna with a glass of Valpolicella Ripasso Tenute Salvaterra.