When it comes to pasta dishes, no other nation comes even close to Italy.
Just like the Spanish have tapas, the Mexicans have tacos, and the Scottish have deep-fried Mars Bars, the Italians have made pasta their own.
They are the world’s biggest consumers, chomping down a staggering 24 kilos per person each year, and with over 350 different types of pasta available, it’s easy to see how the Italians can eat it every day without getting bored.
For this post, we picked three of our favourite pasta dishes for you to enjoy at home.
Chorizo Spaghetti Bolognese
Spaghetti is the world’s most popular type of pasta, accounting for about two-thirds eaten. The name comes from Spago, which means string or twine, but surprisingly it is one of the latest shapes of pasta to appear. It wasn’t until the 19th Century that machines could create the long, uniform strands which make it so popular.
- 1 pack (450g / 16oz) Spanish chorizo, chopped
- 1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive oil
- 2 sprigs rosemary, leaves picked and chopped
- ¼ teaspoon chilli flakes
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 red onion, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup red wine
- 1 can whole tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 400g / 14oz cooked spaghetti pasta
- 100g / 3.5oz fresh buffalo mozzarella cheese
Place the chorizo in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped.
Heat the oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion, chilli flakes and garlic and stir fry for 1-2 minutes. Add the chorizo and rosemary and continue to cook for 2-3 minutes. Add the wine, simmer 1-2 minutes, then add tomatoes and sugar. Cover the pot and reduce the heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes.
Heat the spaghetti according to the packet instructions.
Serve the spaghetti tossed with the chorizo bolognese, mozzarella, drizzle of olive oil, rosemary and freshly ground black pepper.
Fusilli pasta, also known as Rotini in America, is a type of pasta that is formed into a corkscrew or spiral shapes. Due to its unique shape, fusilli is often served with thicker, creamier sauces as they “cling” to the pasta. This delicious dish takes less than half an hour from beginning to end, perfect for a quick lunch!
- 2 punnets cherry tomatoes
- 6 cloves garlic, peeled and slightly crushed
- 350g / 12oz dry large pasta spirals
- 250g / 8.8oz tub fresh bocconcini
- 1 cup fresh basil
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 3 tablespoons balsamic glaze
- Salt and pepper
Preheat the oven to 190ºC / 375ºF degrees fan bake. In a baking dish, spread out the cherry tomatoes and garlic cloves. Season, drizzle with oil, then roast for 15-20 minutes or until the skins have blistered. Set aside.
Cook the pasta as per packet instructions, drain, and then place into a bowl.
Add the roasted tomatoes and garlic to the pasta, then use your hands to tear the bocconcini into the mix, followed by the torn basil.
Pour over a generous drizzle of Olivado organic extra virgin olive oil then toss to combine.
Season with salt and pepper and serve warm with the balsamic drizzle.
Mushroom and Garlic Fettuccine
Fettuccine is a thick, flat pasta, similar to tagliatelle. In fact, it’s basically the same as tagliatelle, but comes from Rome instead of Bologna, a fact which most Italians will insist is important to the final flavour. The following recipe is for 6 people, so get some friends round, open a bottle of wine and enjoy!
- 500g / 1.1lbs dried fettuccine
- 1/3 cup Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 large garlic cloves, cut into thin slices
- ½ tsp chilli flakes
- 1 Tbsp dried mixed herbs
- 1 tsp salt
- 220g / 8oz can Mushrooms, sliced in sauce
- 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus extra for serving
- Squeeze of lemon
Cook pasta in salted water according to the directions on the package and set aside 1 cup of the pasta cooking water before draining.
While the pasta is cooking, heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large pot. Add the garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring, until it just begins to turn golden on the edges.
Add the chilli flakes and mixed herbs, and cook for 30 seconds more.
Add the reserved pasta-cooking water to the pot and bring to a boil. Lower the heat, add salt and simmer for about 5 minutes until the liquid is reduced by about a third.
Add the mushrooms to the liquid and heat for a further minute.
Add the drained pasta to the sauce and toss.
Remove from the heat and add the parmesan and a squeeze of lemon. Toss well.
Serve in bowls with extra parmesan and Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil.
Bring Italy into your home with Olivado!
Italian food is divine, and its special ingredient is Olive Oil.
A staple of the Italian diet, olive oil has been used for thousands of years in recipes, with a myriad of natural health benefits.
In fact, Olive oil is considered by many to be the reason people in the Mediterranean have astonishing low rates of heart disease, as well as a longer life expectancy than other European countries.
Olives are some of the best foods for antioxidants, such as vitamin E, carotenoids and phenolic compounds, and they’re also high in healthy monounsaturated fats, which help keep your brain healthy.
Our Extra Virgin Organic Olive Oil is cold-pressed, allowing the oil to retain its goodness, keeping all those antioxidants, polyphenols, and organic compounds inside the bottle where they belong.
And of course, as well as being good for you, it’s also delicious, with a robust, peppery flavour.
If you would like to transform your culinary skills, then upgrading your cooking oil is the first step!
Or if you have any questions we can help you with, simply contact us and let’s have a chat.