Sauces & Spreads
From the traditional tomato sauce to the world famous carpaccio sauce (which was invented by my grandfather Giuseppe), sauces contribute the perfect finishing touch.
A simple sauce can make a meal.
Carpaccio is the most popular dish served at Harry's Bar. It is named for Vittore Carpaccio, the Venetian Renaissance painter known for his use of brilliant reds and whites.
My father invented this dish in 1950, the year of the great Carpaccio exhibition in Venice.
The dish was inspired by the Contessa Amalia Nani Mocenigo, a frequent customer at Harry's Bar whose doctor had placed her on a diet forbidding cooked meat.
Carpaccio, which has been copied by any number of good restaurants all over the world, is made by covering a plate with the thinnest possible slices of raw beef and garnishing it with shaved cheese or an olive oil dressing.
The genius of my father's invention is his light, cream-colored sauce that is drizzled over the meat in a crosshatch pattern. We make Carpaccio with shell of beef, a tender and flavorful cut, and we never freeze it before slicing.
Carpaccio can also be made with beef fillet, which has less flavor than shell but is much easier to handle.
Ask the butcher to trim the meat for you. You may even be able to convince him to slice it but do so only if you plan to serve it an hour or 2 later.
If you slice the meat yourself, use a razor-sharp knife with a long blade.
• 3 pounds boned shell of beaf (1.350 g), to yield 1 1/2 pounds after trimming (675 g)
• 1 recipe Carpaccio Sauce
Trim every bit of fat, sinew, or gristle from the boned shell, leaving a small cylinder of tender meat.
Chill the meat well. Using a razor-sharp knife, slice the meat paper-thin.
Arrange the slices of meat on 6 salad plates to cover the surface completely.
Drizzle the sauce decoratively over the meat in ribbons.
(makes about 21/2 cups – 625 ml)
• 1 cup olive oil (60 ml)
• h/a cup minced onion (60 ml)
• 1 28-ounce can crushed Italian plum tomatoes or whole tomatoes, chopped, with juices (800 g)
• salt• freshly ground pepper
• 1 bay leaf
• 1 tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil leaves
Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium heat.
Add the onion and cook it, stirring frequently until it is wilted ( about 4 minutes). Add the tomatoes, salt, pepper and bay leaf and heat to boiling.
Reduce the heat to low and simmer, uncovered, for about 30 minutes, stirring frequently.
Stir in the chopped basil and simmer for 5 minutes longer.
Strain the mixture through a colander set over a bowl.