Monday, July 16, 2018

Trattoria Giancarlo: Cucina Italiano in Little Italy

Located in the heart of Toronto's Little Italy, this intimate Italian trattoria at the corner of College and Clinton, has been a long time favourite among Toronto's dining cognoscenti for over 30 years. Executive chef and co-owner Eugenia Barato is the culinary heart of Trattoria Giancarlo, serving classic Italian cuisine, from homemade pasta, luscious risottos, succulent seafood, and Grigliate such as rack of lamb, aged bone-in veal chops and whole fish stuffed with herbs and fresh lemon and and finished with extra virgin olive oil. Inspired antipasti such as grilled polenta with baked mushrooms or flash seared beef carpaccio dressed with black truffle balsamic are popular favourites, but what keeps me coming back is Eugenia's sunny-hued Tagliatelle Limone simmered in a Parmigiano-Reggiano and lemon buttercream — delizioso!

The open kitchen of Trattoria Giancarlo

Fresh baked bread in a wooden barrel in the front window of the kitchen

Chef-Owners Jason and Elena Barato of Trattoria Giancarlo

Grilled bread rubbed with garlic and basil, seasoned with cracked black pepper 
and extra virgin olive oil

An array of Italian wines behind the bar from Antinori Bramito della Sala to Brunello di Montalcino

A lovely crisp Rosé from Puglia

Tagliolini Alio Olio with garlic, red chili oil, herbs and onion chips

Caprese Salad with ricotta and fresh basil

Lamb chops with fried sweet onions and grilled asparagus

Tagliatelle Limone with Parmigiano and lemon buttercream

Funghi al Forno
Serves 6
Recipe courtesy of chef/owner Eugenia Barato, Trattoria Giancarlo

1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley
6 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 tsp hot pepper flakes
1 1/2 lb assorted mushrooms: shiitake, oyster, cremini
1/2 cup olive oil
2 tbsp Balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups grated parmigiano

Preheat oven to 400°F. In a small bowl, mix together the parsley, garlic and hot pepper flakes. Trim the mushroom stems and brush off any dirt with a damp cloth. Discard the shiitake stems. In a large bowl, mix together the olive oil, vinegar and salt. Add the mushroom s and toss to coat. Spread the mushrooms in a single layer on a large rimmed baking sheet. Sprinkle with the parsley mixture and and grated parmesan. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes until tender, then the mushrooms with the juices on a decorative platter and serve immediately.

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