Pasta Passion: Orechiette


The humble Orecchiette

Sicilian’s are particularly passionate about their pasta, without a plate of pasta a day they are simply lost. Italian’s are infamous for going on holidays overseas and complaining about the food when they can’t find pasta cooked to a perfection, for them good food means al dente pasta dishes. Al dente being slightly crunchy under the tooth, that is not over cooked that it becomes too soft.


Nobody has ever told them there is other types of food, perhaps someone did but they were too busy stuffing pasta into their mouths to listen.


Before coming to live in Sicily I was used to eating pasta maybe once a week, which is often enough thank you very much. Now that I find myself living with so many Italian’s I find myself cooking pasta everyday and if I am at someones house this means eating it too! Needless to say I am sick of pasta, but there is really no way of getting out of this pasta passion!


I try to take make the best out of a dull situation and hunt down different forms of pasta and exciting new recipes, to move away from spaghetti and penne with tomato sauce!


This week I have introduced everyone in my extended Sicilian family to the fun of the humble orechiette, funny little cap shaped mushrooms heads that get their name for resembling little ear shapes.


I saw a lovely recipe on the television with gorgonzola cheese and crushed pistachio crumbs that I fell in love with. Since no one here eats gorgonzola I compromised and did them with a fresh cream sauce punctuated with little crunchy pieces of slightly fried cured ham (not a new recipe, the pasta was the new entry.)


It was a hit and I was saved from being totally utterly disgusted by another meal of pasta!


Sign off unwilling expat 2014