Concordia Chef Giorgio sent this recipe:
Couscous Royale by Giorgio Deidda
I was born in Oristano in Sardinia, Italy, but I have lived and cooked in many other regions and countries including: France, UK, Ireland, Switzerland and of course Antarctica. I am the only chef at Concordia who has cooked in Antarctica for more than three winters and hold the record for overwintering the most number of times at Concordia.
My career began at 16 washing pots and pans in a restaurant at Costa Esmeralda in Sardinia where I learnt the finishing touches of preparing not just meals, but local regional specialities. My hidden passion was discovered and I was promoted to chef's assistant. I completed my training at the hotel school "Le Saleve" in Annemasse, France.
This recipe has origins in Morocco. I have to plan weeks in advance at Concordia as most ingredients are frozen. With an outside temperature of -75 degrees Celsius or thereabouts we use the Antarctic climate as a large freezer. It can take up to 7 days to defrost and ensure ingredients are ready to be cooked.
In Morocco, this dish is eaten without cutlery, with your hands, although it is advisable to follow the habits of your invitees as we do in Concordia. (more...)
Chef Deidda’s Moroccan briouats
Concordia chef Giorgio Deidda sent us this recipe for Chicken briouats: Alex is writing blogs for the New York Times over the next few weeks. In his recent entry he wrote about Antarctic cooking. I thought I would share this recipe of a Moroccan briouats: stuffed fried-pastry.
Obviously at Concordia I had to use dried mint and frozen chicken as we have run out of fresh food. You are advised to use fresh mint and chicken if possible! (more...)
“Pizzudos di Ovodda” Credits: G. Deidda
Chef Giorgio writes: I was very busy during midwinter. Every day I prepared a different evening meal for the themes we had chosen. They varied from Arabic to Roman flavours. On midwinter day itself we had a gourmet meal themed around polar explorer Ernest Shackleton. I made a specialty from Sardinia where I grew up. Called “Pizzudos di Ovodda” it is a large ravioli, stuffed with melted soft cheese and Pecorino, served with potatoes and a simple basil-tomato sauce and flakes of Parmesan.
Sometimes, if I am lucky, I have time for a siesta where I dream up new recipes. Down here in Concordia our dreams are extremely vivid and they have often been inspirational to my cooking. (more...)
Half way somewhere: Midwinter & Midsummer Greetings from Concordia to the world!
Alex writes: Another 'Christmas' of sorts comes again in Antarctica - arriving on the eve June 21, in a flurry of preparations, costumes, speeches, entertainment, music and dance accompanied by some of chef Giorgio’s best food. It comes at the height of the Northern Hemisphere's summer. This could be the most international holiday in the world, with all the nationalities staying in Antarctica, regardless of race or religion. It is a special day and it brings new hope. Please keep sending us your photos of midsummer celebrations.
Short and sweet update from Giorgio
Credits: A. Kumar
An update from Chef Giorgio: This week marks midwinter, we are at the darkest period, halfway to seeing the Sun again. I decided to start the week by boosting morale for the crew.
Chocolate is great for morale when it is cold and dark outside. I woke up 2.5 hours before the rest of the crew and prepared this. Living in Antarctica inspired me to make the penguins...
If you wish you can see more photos of the meals I create on my new Facebook page.
Please send us your photos of midsummer celebrations, we are enjoying the pictures of the Sun already.
Alex and Sebastien’s birthday: Fusion cooking
Credits: A. Kumar
Giorgio writes: Saturday we celebrated Alex and Sebastien’s birthday as well as Queen Elizabeth’s 60th jubilee.
I tried to cook a menu that mixed the birthday boy’s heritage. It was not an obvious combination as Alex is English and Indian while Seb is from France. (more...)
Birthday cooking with Giorgio
Credits: A. Kumar
New entry from Giorgio: My name is Giorgio Deidda and I am the chef on Planet Concordia. Anyone who has been hungry will know that food is very important to how you feel and for morale. I take my job very seriously.
I will be helping Alex with this blog and will share some of my favourite recipes with you.
This is my third winter in Concordia where I enjoy the freedom to cook what I wish and I enjoy the challenge of cooking in the extreme environment. I try to continually surprise my crew mates and to push the boundaries of Antarctic cooking.
Cooking on Concordia is different in every way. Even water boils differently here. Because the atmospheric pressure is so low water starts to boil at 87 degrees Celsius instead of 100 degrees. Getting pasta to cook perfectly ‘al dente’ requires both experience and trial and error. (more...)