FIVE TOP ITALIAN PASTA DISHES
Sicily is the home of pasta and is naturally, the best place in the world to sample the likes of this wonderful food. Such a simple staple, pasta is perfect for experimenting with, and that the Sicilians’ have. With so many options (over 600 different types of pasta across the world), it can be hard to decide what to order. But no fear – help is here from celebrity TV chef, Enzo Oliveri of Tasting Sicily Enzo’s Kitchen, who is revealing the 5 top Italian pasta dishes you can’t live without (all of which are on the Italian Classics menu at his Piccadilly restaurant):
1. Spaghetti Bolognese – everyone has their own recipe for this classic; but it’s always sure to get the whole family around the table for dinner. The Bolognese sauce is a delicious ragu made out of flavourful mince, fresh tomato sauce, served on top of a pile of steamy spaghetti.
2. Lasagne – part of a different category of pasta altogether – ‘pasta al forno’ meaning it’s baked. Lasagne is traditionally a base of pre-cooked lasagne sheets, with rich mince, tomato sauce and a creamy white bechamel sauce on top. Topped with cheese and then baked in the oven, this dish is then cut into single portions before being served.
3. Penne all’Arrabbiata – Arrabbiata literally means “angry” in Italian; but this dish is nothing to be angry about. The spicy, red sauce is packed with tomatoes, garlic, olive oil and dried red chili peppers which give it an ‘angry,’ spicy kick. As this is a thicker, tomato-based sauce, it is best served with a short, tubular pasta such as penne.
4. Fettuccine Alfredo – Alfredo is a simple white sauce made with butter and parmesan, melted together in a pan to create a smooth, creamy texture. Fettuccine is a thick, flat pasta made from eggs which pairs beautifully with the creamy sauce – the bigger surface area of the pasta gives the sauce more surface to cling on to. For expert-quality presentation, lift the pasta high above the plate to create a stunning look.
5. Carbonara – derived from the Italian word ‘carbonaro’ which means ‘charcoal burner,’ the legend says that this dish was originally created to feed hungry charcoal miners after a long day at work. Created in a similar way to Fettuccine Alfredo, a carbonara dish has the addition of black pepper, guanciale (an Italian cured meat or pancetta pieces outside of Italy) and eggs making the whole thing much more indulgent.