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Chefs at home: Watch Damian D'Silva of Folklore reveal the perfect seafood pasta recipe

Exceptional home fare

Text: Janice Sim


The brief for a 'Chefs at Home' video might be demonstrating a 'lazy', 'easy' dish — but when it concerns chef Damian D'Silva of Folklore, there's no such thing as cutting corners even at home. 

While he rocked a casual T-shirt and jeans, chef Damian fondly and carefully cooks up a seafood cartoccio, a dish that will only make an appearance when his kids are present at the dinner table. Total cooking time? Probably a little over two hours. But let's just say the finishing result was probably one of the best pastas we've ever tasted — and this is store-bought noods we're talking about (tip: take notes on the brand).

Our hopes of being adopted into the D'Silvas might be dashed, but we can count on this recipe below to recreate this sublime dish.

Recipe for Damian D'Silva's seafood cartoccio
Serves 6

Here's what you need

1 kg King Prawns "Angka" deveined and cleaned (est. around 16 to 18 prawns)
500g Frozen Scallops (preferably Japanese)
200ml Fish Stock
500g Dried Pasta (De Cecco, Rustichella d'Abruzzo or Barilla recommended)
150g Pitted Black Olives
25g Salted Capers (soaked in water to reduce salt)
350g Diced Sweet Red Onions
4 cans Pomodoro Pelati (remove core and separate pulp from liquid)
70ml Extra Virgin Olive Oil - 70 ml for cooking plus extra for later
1 btl Pinot Grigio (¼ for the dish and the rest to drink!)
100g Diced Italian Parsley
1 knob Unsalted Butter

Other materials

Baking Parchment — enough to put the contents after cooking.
This recipe requires approximately 2 sheets of 60 cm x 60 cm and a stapler to fasten the sheets together.

How to make it

1. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan, and when hot, add the butter till the mixture is almost smoking.
2. Add the onions and cook over medium heat till the onions are soft and almost caramelised.
3. Add the tomato pulp, olives, capers and cook till the tomatoes are broken down to the consistency of a paste before adding the white wine.
4. When the wine has evaporated, add the tomato liquid and cook till the liquid evaporates. Add fish stock to the list. This process takes between an hour and an hour and a half. Keep the heat on a low flame.
5. At this time, bring a large pot of water to boil before adding the pasta. It's always best to try the pasta to test for doneness. As the pasta will be baked in addition to boiled, you would want to ensure that your pasta is cooked a little under al dente.
6. Turn the oven to top heat and to the highest level possible. Make sure the pasta is almost done before turning up the heat for the sauce.
7. Turn the heat up and when the liquid is hot again add the prawns and gently cook them for 6 minutes before adding the scallops. Cook for another 4 minutes and when the pasta is done, drain the pasta but reserve about 50 ml of the pasta water.
8. Add the pasta to the sauce and gently stir the contents till everything is well tossed, if the contents look a little dry, you may add some of the 50ml reserved liquid.
9. Prepare the baking parchment by placing it on a pan, transfer the pasta to the baking parchment and staple to seal the contents in the parchment, making sure there are no vents for the heat to escape when it's in the oven.
10. Bake it in the oven, till the parchment turns brown. This should not take longer than 10 minutes if the heat in the oven is at the right temperature.
11. Remove the parchment and carefully cut open the parchment, making sure the staples are removed. Add the parsley and more olive oil and toss the pasta to mix well before serving.

Creative Producer: Vanessa Caitlin
Videography: David Bay
Lifestyle Editor: Janice Sim
Sound: Hazirah Rahim

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