Frank Camorra1

Lunch with Frank Camorra and Mitch Orr

4 May - By Alyssa Mittiga

Tapas king Frank Camorra (MoVida, Melbourne) united with new generation pasta prince Mitch Orr (ACME, Sydney) in the Adelaide Central Market Kitchen for a cooking demonstration on Thursday, serving a four-course lunch that encompassed two diverse backgrounds.

Spain met Italy as the chefs found common ground in a love of fresh seasonal produce and vegetables. “Cooking according to seasonality is most important to both of us,” said Frank. “Mitch is innovative while I start with tradition, but we use seasonal Australian produce to tweak the dish.”

Mitch’s experimental nature was evident in his fusion of Japanese flavours, such as kombucha tea with South Australian radish. His vitality was also evident by considering modern dietary requirements with his soy emulsion that caters for vegans or coeliacs.

Mitch prefers to call his Sydney pasta restaurant a “neighbourhood noodle bar”. His style is by no means traditional, which he proved in his quest to recreate the flavour and texture of fried chicken from a turnip.

In contrast stood Frank, serious, with arms crossed. “This dish is traditional,” Frank announced as he began making a classic calamari soffrito.

Mitch justified their collaboration. “Although Frank and I have different styles, we both try and create layers of flavour and umami in whatever we do,” he said.

Both chefs’ passion for flavour was evident in their recipes laced with personal touches, such as Frank’s preference to mix butter with olive oil when cooking mushrooms. Guests received a culinary education during the class, as did students from Meridian Vocational College, who worked alongside Frank and Mitch in the kitchen.

Frank returns home to Melbourne on Friday, but you can still taste a meal by cooked Mitch at Tasting Australia’s Chefs Supper Club in Town Square on Saturday night.

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