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Category Archives: Pasta
Pasta Day (Day 3) at the Italian Culinary Institute.
While we ate pasta in Day 2 with the sauces we made, Day 3 was all about making the pasta. Northern Italian pasta made with eggs. Some stuffed, some cut through the pasta machine (tagliatelle), and some in colors of green (spinach powder), burgundy (beet powder), black (cuttlefish ink), and yellow (saffron). The colors were layered in stripes to make a stuffed pasta called caramella because it looks like a wrapped caramel.
Then Southern Italian pasta (no eggs) rolled on a rod to make scilatelle. Lots and lots of rolling and sliding the pasta off the rod. Took a few tries to get the hang of it.
And of course we ate.
First we tasted fresh bergamot – the citrus grows here and is primarily used in perfume. For cooking, the juice and zest are used. It has a very bright and floral citrus zing.
Then we had a breakfast of lamb and eggs. The lamb was a lamb pancetta that was made the prior day. It was crisped in the oven and served with sunny side up eggs with a drizzle of concentrated lamb stock and a petite tomato roll. Yummy!
Then we tasted the pork ribs and stock that we made the prior day called Bolito. The bolito rib was served with crostini, bolito stock and mollica (parsley, lemon zest, garlic, extra virgin olive oil). Bolito is a foundation for many other dishes in Italian cuisine. The pork from the ribs was used to make pasta stuffing and the stock was used in several other dishes.
And then there was Lugane… Since chef had quite a few truffles, he needed to use them up – a happy situation for us students. Truffle butter, a little bolito stock, a little of the fat skimmed from the bolito stock – toss in the fresh pasta we just made and finish the dish with pecorino and parmigiana cheeses, a little drizzle of olive oil, a touch of fresh parsley and a couple of shavings of black truffle. Just. Divine.
We also made Bolognese sauce yesterday and had this with tagliatelle pasta finished with rosemary oil and pecorino. Comfort food at its best.
Then in preparation for Day 4, we made Biga. Biga is a pre-dough used in making all kinds of bread.
For dinner, we had Pollo ala Romana (Chicken thighs with tomatoes and peppers) served over soft polenta. Then to finish off the day, a shot of Vecchio Amaro del Capo – a spicy liqueur made locally by monks – or so the story goes. A very satisfying family dinner to end the day.
A very good day indeed.
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