“. . . Less than 24 hours after Italy announced a COVID19 outbreak in Lombardia in Northern Italy, photos of barren Italian supermarket shelves were posted on Twitter. The subject of the social media buzz centered around one of Italy’s most favorite topics: pasta. Lonely bags of smooth penne pasta, penne lisce, remained perched on ravaged aisles. All of the penne rigate, ridged penne, was gone. . . “
An Italian Tweet – Continuo a guardare questa foto fatta prima al supermercato e penso al fatto che il grande sconfitto da questo virus sono le penne lisce che agli italiani fanno cagare pure quando sono presi dal panico e si preparano all’apocalisse.
Translation – “I keep looking at this photo I took earlier in the supermarket, and I think the biggest loser of this virus is penne lisce. Italians think it’s shit, even as they panic and prepare for the apocalypse.”
When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. So, when you can’t get fresh clams, use canned. You don’t need fresh clams for this one. Clam sauce and linguine traditionally go together but if you can’t get linguine use whatever pasta you like.
¼ cup olive oil and more for drizzling 3 cloves of garlic, sliced Salt, black and red pepper 1 can of clams 1 bottle of clam broth ½ half cup of chopped parsley divided 1 lb. linguine
Heat the oil in another pot on medium heat and add the garlic, salt and pepper. Give the garlic a few minutes to flavor the oil. Strain the canned clams, saving the liquid and add them to the pot. Sauté for a few minutes, add half the parsley and the liquid from the canned clams and the bottle of clam broth. Let it simmer for a few minutes.
When the pasta is almost done add it to the pot with the sauce to finish cooking. Remove it to a serving dish, sprinkle with the rest of the chopped parsley and drizzle it with some olive oil. Most Italians agree that’s it’s a mortal sin to put cheese on seafood.
In Italian its pasta e fagioli – that means “pasta and beans.” Some people call it pasta fazool. Both pronunciations are correct. In the Neapolitan dialect its pasta e fasule, often spelled pasta fazool in America.
In a large pot, cook the trinity in oil. When the vegetables are soft, add the beans and 8 cups of water. Bring to a boil, lower heat and simmer, covered for 2 hours.
Add salt and pepper, the cherry tomatoes, 2 more cups of water, and the pasta. If necessary, add more water as the pasta cooks. When the pasta is almost done, throw in a couple of hands full of arugula or spinach. I’m using a mix of both. When the greens whilt, it’s ready to serve.
I think it’s tastier reheated the next day. Just add some water to the pot and stir over a low flame.
A pound of beans and a pound of pasta can rally grow as they cook. You might to cut those 2 ingredients in half.
Here’s a simple dish. It’s easy to make with just a few easy to get ingredients.
broccoli cut into florets
¼ cup olive oil
2 cloves sliced garlic
1 lb. pasta (your choice)
Salt and black pepper
Place the broccoli in a pot of boiling salted water for 5 to 8 minutes.
Remove the broccoli to a bowl and withthe water continuing to boil, add the pasta.
While the pasta is cooking, in another pot lightly sauté the garlic in the oil and then toss the broccoli, thoroughly coating it with the oil. Season with the salt and pepper.
When the pasta is almost done remove it from the water and add it to the broccoli, garlic, oil mix to finish cooking. Add some of the pasta water and a sprinkle of oil, stir and serve with grated Parmesan cheese if you like. This recipe also works with cauliflower instead of broccoli.
An interesting recipe – turmeric pasta – from Sue Li in the New York Times. I think of turmeric as a typically Indian ingredient but it really works with pasta. I made a couple of changes to her recipe replacing butter with olive oil and heavy cream with ricotta. You can do it either way.
1 lb. small pasta
Olive oil for frying
1 small onion, thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 ½ tsps. Turmeric
1 cup ricotta
1 cup Parmesan cheese
4 tbsp. chopped parsley
Start a pot of salted water to cook the pasta. Drain the pasta when done, reserving 2 cups of the pasta water.
Saute the onion and garlic in oil in a pot. When the onion is soft add the turmeric and stir it into the onions for about 30 seconds. Slowly whisk in the ricotta and bring to a simmer. Stir in the Parmesan and add enough of the pasta water (you may not need all of it) to thin to a sauce consistency. Add the cooked pasta and parsley, blend and serve with additional cheese.
I came across an interesting pasta article by Chris Colin, originally published in Saveur and republished in Pocket – On the Hunt for the World’s Rarest Pasta.
On the Hunt for the World’s Rarest Pasta
“Delicate and impossible to replicate, su filindeu (or the “threads of God”) is a pasta made of hundreds of tiny strands by a single woman in a hillside town in Sardinia. She’ll make it for you too—if you’re willing to walk 20 miles overnight.”
* If you like it spicy use red serranoes instead of a bell pepper.
Put a pot of salted water on the stove for the pasta. By the time the water boils and the pasta is cooked, the sauce will be ready.
Cook the anchovies, garlic, and walnuts in the oil until the garlic starts to color. Add the tomato paste and the sliced pepper and simmer for 10 minutes.
Let the mixture cool for a few minutes and scrape it into a food processor or blender. Add the cheese, lemon juice, and salt. Blend until smooth and pour the mixture into a heated serving bowl and add the butter.
When it’s done, add the pasta and ½ cup of the pasta cooking water to the bowl, more water if the sauce is too dry. Serve Red Pesto Pasta with Parmigiana cheese.
I got this recipe from a friend who got it from a food page on Facebook. No amounts were given but what I’ve listed here works pretty well. Since the ingredients aren’t written in stone, I suggest that you adjust the amounts according to your taste. Mushroom and Pepper Pasta Sauce is rich, thick, and hearty with some intense flavors.
Sauté the pepper and onions in oil until they begin to soften. Season with salt and black pepper. Add the paste and blend. Continue cooking until peppers and onions just begin to brown and remove them from the pan.
Add some more oil and cook the mushrooms until they soften and brown. Remove them from the pan.
Add the sausage to the pan and brown. Add oil as you need it. When almost done add the garlic. Blend and add the puree and return the onion, peppers, and mushrooms. Taste for seasoning. Stir and simmer partially coveredfor 20 minutes.
Drain and serve the pasta. Add some pasta water if the sauce is too thick. Serve with grated Parmigiana.
Lightly sauté the onion in the oil and then add the pancetta. When the onion is translucent and the pancetta fat renders, add the tomato sauce.
While the sauce is simmering bring water for the pasta to a boil in a large pot. Add the pisarei . Don’t crowd the pot or they’ll stick together. After about 8-9 minutes, when they float to the top they are ready.
Take them out of the water with a skimmer and place them in the pot with the sauce. Sauté’ for a few minutes and add the beans. Simmer for another few minutes and serve Pisarei e faso’ with parmigiana and a drizzle of olive oil.