Shir Kidan decides to stop playing it safe with the same old cannelloni dish and discovers a whole world of Italian cooking to satisfy her ravenous appetite at Papardele in Rehovot.
Every time I come to Papardelle I eat the same cannelloni dish. This time I promised myself to check out some of the other dishes. For starters I ordered the fresh and meaty sautéed mushrooms served on two triangles of focaccia of with a touch of homemade pesto. The juice from the mushroom along with the pesto was absorbed by the focaccia, making it a juicy delight. My friend ordered the taboon baked baladi eggplant swimming in a luxurious green tehina bath. The eggplant was excellent – soft, tender and served with two slices of bruschetta. To my friend’s great delight the dish was also served with a huge lemon wedge as well as a piquant salsa that would work wonders on just about any dish.
I had arrived very hungry. Somehow, running between meetings, I ended up not eating all day. So, while my friend was still working on her appetizer, I ordered myself the pizza polli. Crisp dough with tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese, on top of which were generous helpings of egg, red onion and red pepper.
When my friend finally finished and started picking at my pizza, I understood that this was my cue to order our mains. A whole taboon baked sea bream spread with sundried tomatoes and black olive tapanede made its way to our table. The meaty fish sat on a light gnocchi in a garlic, olive oil and fresh herb sauce. The light sauce complemented both the gnocchi and the fish. I encouraged my friend to finish off this dish and I ordered myself a dish of sweet potato ravioli in rose sauce – large pasta crescents filled with soft sweet potato in a creamy tomato sauce.
By this point we were truly stuffed – but still we contemplated dessert. I’d heard a lot about Eyal’s pastry at Papardele. My friend went nuts over the chocolate soufflé that came with ice cream and whipped cream. Inside the soufflé the chocolate was hot and liquid, relieving us of all cares in the world. I ordered the chocolate truffle cake – and it was love at first site. A dark chocolate bomb with melt in your mouth chocolate meringue. The truth? Papardele is worth coming to even if you live across the country – and not just for the cannelloni.
Papardele3 Hamada, Mada Park, RehovotTel: 08-9364422