Saturday, April 14, 2012

Intriguing Italian with Guest Chef Stefano Merlo at Favola, Le Meridien Kuala Lumpur

Meet Chef Stefano Merlo from Rossini's, Sheraton Grande Sukhumvit, Bangkok..

From 15 - 21 April 2012, guest chef Stefano Merlo from the award winning Rossini's in Sheraton Grande Sukhumvit, Bangkok will be showcasing irresistible gourmet delights that blends Italy's rich culinary traditions with a contemporary twist at Favola Italian Restaurant in Le Meridien KL (6.30pm-10.30pm). There are over 20 dishes to choose from, a la carte dishes are priced from RM30++ to RM250++ and a 4-course set menu is available from RM300 nett per person or RM450 nett with wine pairing.

Chef Stefano has worked with many highly respected chefs, including Michelin-starred chef Alfredo Russo, the Michelin star chef from Il Dolce Stil Novo in Turin who is acknowledged as the master of "New Italian Style" Cuisine.

We were fortunate to be able to attend a cooking demo by Chef Stefano at Favola this morning along with some other fabulous bloggers! ;)

Favola Interior

Cooking demo ingredients

During the cooking demo, Chef Stefano prepared 3 dishes for us to try - Artichokes Frittata, Seafood Risotto and Milk Risotto with Cherry Parfait. I enjoyed them all, but my favorites has to be both the risotto dishes as I have a soft spot for risotto.

Chef Stefano described the artichokes frittata as similar to "scrambled eggs". I have to say the method of preparation is extremely intriguing, it was my first time seeing eggs first fried, then blended and put through a whipped cream dispenser before being served with steamed artichokes and croutons. This really is contemporary Italian cuisine.

Fry the eggs with EVOO, salt and pepper first.

Then transfer the frittata to a blender and blend with cream until smooth, the consistency should be mousse-like. 

And there you have, a very interesting take on frittata. The artichoke frittata is available on the a la carte menu for RM50.

Frittata ai Carciofi

Cooking up a storm..

Next, Chef Stefano whipped up a mouthwatering seafood risotto.. oh my lord, the smell of the risotto cooking was just lovely. Chef Stefano tells us that the most important thing to remember when making a risotto are the 3 steps: 1.Toast the rice with butter, 2.Keep stirring and adding stock in small amounts and 3. Add butter/olive oil in the end (the mantecatura) Looks like my recipe for mushroom risotto has all the right requirements for a good risotto. ;)

Chef Stefano also made a foam using stock and lecithin which will allow the foam to hold its form for a long time. The risotto was cooked for a good 15 minutes until al dente, and served with seafood (prawns, scallops, mussels, squid) and foam.

Some pepper, please?

Favola Sous Chef, Sazli Nazim pan frying the seafood. Oh yums! (I see scallops yay!)

Sizzle sizzle!

It's foam time!

Some Parmesan and parsley 

Chef Stefano and his scrumptious seafood risotto


And finally, Chef Stefano prepared a milk risotto with cherry parfait. For Hubby and I, the milk risotto was very similar to the British version of rice pudding that we love so this was a huge hit with us. Amongst all the recipes shared, I think this is one that many of you will be able to recreate at home, hence I will share the recipe in another post. The only thing you may not be able to do is make your cherry parfait in a Pacojet (well, unless you have one of this cool expensive machines already!). Pacojet is a cool machine which can make ice-cream and many other things in seconds! But you can always cheat and use vanilla ice cream out of a tub as it will do the trick.

We were impressed with the presentation of the dish, as the parfait was made to resemble a real cherry, cute right?

Milk risotto with cherry parfait

Happy Diners!

And of course, the good people of Le Meridien KL treated us to the Favola Hi-Tea (available every Saturdays 12.00-3.00pm for RM88 per person) where we got to enjoy the spread of antipasti, meat, pizza, pasta and desserts!


Desserts (the tiramisu was lovely!)

Cute cones!

And all the girls went ga-ga over the waffles! My gorgeous waffle models ;)




Thanks to Le Meridien KL for the opportunity to attend this cooking demo with Chef Stefano and also for the delicious hi-tea spread.

Full set of photos available to view here.

Location: Favola, Level 8, Le Méridien Kuala Lumpur, 2 Jalan Stesen Sentral, 50470 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. (Directly opposite KL Sentral station and next to KL Hilton)

Tel: 03- 2263 7434

GPS Coordinates: 3.135685, 101.686524



  1. ooo, those three dishes all do look intriguingly appetizing. i wonder what the RM250++ dish on the a la carte menu will be though! maybe some kinda lobster or some kinda beef :D

    1. The most expensive dish is the Wagyu ribeye pizzaiola style for RM250 ;P Then the next most item is RM110 for roasted lamb rack.

  2. Replies
    1. Love attending cooking demos, can learn loads!

  3. they can just call u speedy sumo! gorgeous.. absolutely gorgeous as FBB would say. A rather well written account and we had such fun right;)

    1. LOL thanks babe. And yeah we had a great time ;) Hope to see u guys again soon.

  4. love the candid adding pepper shot

    1. Haha I like that shot too, and we had a good laugh when the moment was happening!

  5. it was a brilliant Saturday...good food...good company and I learnt quite a bit too. Hopefully that motivates me to cook my own risotto without breaking an arm:D

    1. Hehe wont break an arm la but definitely muscle building!

  6. I love their squid ink spaghetti, haven been back there for a long time. Will keep this place in mind when i'm craving for italian food. =)

    1. We tried the squid ink risotto on this ocassion. I love eating here too, esp the scallops!

  7. Ahhh...those cones are adorable. What's the filling?

    1. Hmm not sure. I didn't eat wor... only Hubby ate. But I like it cos it's cute haha!


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