Latteria Frico by Luca Manfe

Fellow Friulian and Houston-based Italian chef Luca Manfe (lucamanfe.com) was sold on Andrea Cudins cheese from the first bite. Loving the concept of Italian cheeses made with local grass-fed cow milk, Manfe, winner of Master Chef US Season 4, has been incorporating the cheesemakers products into his food ever since. From Lira Rossa mozzarella on the panini he offered in his (nowsold) Lucky Fig food truck to the latteria he uses to make frico at home, a traditional dish of cheese and potatoes. But the one that really took my heart is the smoked ricotta, Manfe said. Its a game changer for any pasta dish, he said. Any simple type of pasta will become elevated and sophisticated [with this smoked ricotta]. Manfe is a firm believer of sourcing local and seasonal: It is very important to know who youre buying from. I ask what the farmer used, or the type of diet the chickens I am buying had. Its not always about what tastes the best but also about what is healthier for you.

Frico is a typical dish from Friuli made with (what could be better?) potatoes and cheese! This recipe uses Lira Rossa latteria but can be made with a similar melting cheese.

October 24, 2017

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 white onions, very thinly sliced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 pound Russet or Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled
  • 8 ounces Lira Rossa Latteria cheese, cut into small pieces

Preparation

Heat the oil in a large nonstick pan over medium-low heat. Add the onions, season with salt and pepper, and cook for 20 to 30 minutes, until the onions are very soft, taking care not to let them caramelize and adding a little hot water if the pan starts to get dry.

Raise the heat to medium. This is where it gets a little tricky: Using the large holes of a box grater, grate the potatoes right into the pan with the onion (if that seems a little daunting, quickly grate them into a bowl and add them to the pan all at once). Using 2 wooden spoons, work the potatoes and onions together until they are fully incorporated into a very sticky and wet paste (takes about 5 minutes). Work that paste! We want to make it as homogenous as possible.

Add the cheeses to the potato mixture. Using the 2 wooden spoons, work the mixture—grabbing it, lifting it up, stretching it and repeating—until all the cheese is melted and incorporated and you have a uniform paste (takes about 5 minutes).

Smooth the mixture into an even layer to cover the pan’s bottom and cook until lightly browned on the bottom, 5 to 10 minutes (use a spatula to lift and check on the color of the bottom crust). Place a large round plate upside down on top of the pan. Turn off the heat, then very rapidly invert the pan and the plate together so the frico ends up on the plate. Set the pan back on the stove, slide the frico back into the pan, and turn the heat to medium-low. Continue to cook until a light brown crust forms on the bottom, 5 to 10 minutes.

Serve on a large wooden tray or cutting board.

Suggestion: Add a tossed salad or try it with the coconut creamed greens.

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Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 white onions, very thinly sliced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 pound Russet or Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled
  • 8 ounces Lira Rossa Latteria cheese, cut into small pieces
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