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How To Make Strichetti

This pasta is taken from the recipe described in Pellegrino¬†Artusi’s Science in the kitchen… and is the first of many recipes I want to try from this book. The shapes are very easy to make, and although a little time consuming the end result is worth the effort. The double loop shape is excellent for holding sauce and it feels good in the mouth, almost like a little dumpling. Interestingly all of the examples I could find described as Strichetti are in the bow tie shape rather than this double fold – although the principle is similar, these hold sauce much better. Artusi serves these in broth but I suggest a rich tomato based sauce to serve. I put the sauce in the bottom of the bowl first, then ladled the pasta straight from the pot onto each bowl of sauce, then spooned over a touch more sauce and added parmesan and pepper. Treating the pasta gently like this let it keep its shape very well.

strichetti (8 of 9)

This recipe makes an entree for 4 or a meal for 3.

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs
  • 200g plain white flour. If a firmer texture is liked, substitute 50g plain flour for fine semolina.

Method

Tip most of the flour into a large mixing bowl, keeping a little aside.

Crack eggs into the bowl and stir with a wooden spoon or fork until there are no more lumps. If the dough feels too sticky to handle easily, add a bit more flour at a time until no longer sticky. It’s much easier to add more flour to a sticky pasta dough than it is to have to knead in more liquid to a very stiff dough! When the dough is workable without being sticky, knead for a few minutes until smooth.

Cover the pasta in a bowl or wrap in glad wrap and set aside for 15-20 minutes.

Flatten dough as much as possible by pressing or rolling on a benchtop before feeding through a pasta machine. Pass through the widest setting a few times, folding the strip in half each time.

Divide the strip in 3, then start feeding a strip through progressively narrower settings on the machine until the right thickness – #2 on my machine. Of course, you can just roll it with a pin instead of using a machine.

Lay the strip on a lightly floured board. Use a fluted pastry cutter to cut strips “a finger and a half wide”.

strichetti (9 of 9)

Then cut on an angle to get diamond shaped pieces.

strichetti (1 of 9)

To shape the pasta, pinch 2 opposite corners together firmly.

strichetti (2 of 9)

Then turn around and pinch the other 2 corners together on the other side. Repeat for each diamond before rolling out the next piece. Work fast so the pieces don’t dry too much – I roped in the family to help.

strichetti (3 of 9)

strichetti (4 of 9)

To cook, bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil with a few tsp salt. Add the pasta, and be ready to start tasting them for done-ness soon after they float to the top. Mine took about 60 seconds after floating up to be cooked to my taste.

strichetti (7 of 9)

You can do without a pasta machine if you don’t mind a bit of work with a rolling pin, but a fluted cutter like this one is worth having for this and lots of other pasta shapes! I found my lovely brass one on ebay second hand.

 

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