Monday, April 26, 2010

Calabria dia due: the art of pasta making.

we wake up to a breakfast of fruit baskets, bread, coffee, tea, and a pot of milk twice as large. from our hostel we can see the sea, the wind is quite chilly but the sun is shining and the sky is clear as far as i can see.  

                                            pasta making

we arrive in a little town. after passing a dead cat “napping” along the side of the street, a dead puppy in a trickling river and a dead car parked in along the river banks...the smell of the citrus blossoms in the air....we walk into an old brick building where we find inside three woman rolling pasta - one of them is rolling long strings of pasta, dipping them in flour and then wrapping sections around her fingers to create bundled knots of pasta (top). two other women have a board across their knees and are putting little bits of pasta in between a rolling straw/needle and making macaroni’s (bottom). this is called ru ferretto. 

then it’s our turn! the macaroni dough was soft and there was a technique to rolling the macaroni long enough and then taking it off the reed without scrunching up the dough. wrap one hand around the rolled dough lightly to guide it then whip it off quickly and smoothly. the knotty bundles required rolling your finger tips back and forth but one hand stays in place while the other one moves along the table to stretch out the dough. the dough was tougher as it was made with rye and required the flour covering to allow the dough to stick together in the bundles when it’s cooked in the boiling water. 
it was very therapeutic.

Sporty teaching me how to correctly roll the dough.

  rolling the macaroni's - my future career
 mad skills.

 we took a short rest in the sun outside as our pasta cooked. our lunch started with a plate of locally brined olives, pecorno cheese, fried zucchini with sprinkled parmesan, eggplant parmese (diff than eggplant parm) and the typical sopressata sausage made with chili and fennel seeds. then we were served our freshly made pasta - bundled knots cooked in a tomato sauce - a very thick, chewy texture - and the macaroni with a meat sauce - very tender. as a contrast, they served a dried/industrial pasta - but i much preferred ours with all of its imperfections. 


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