Troccoli are a typical type of pasta from Puglia and are made with a wooden instrument called “chitarra” (guitar). The chitarra is a handmade kitchen tool that has iron strings that are spaced equally from one another. The strings are present on both sides but with different thickness. One side is used to make troccoli; the other one is used to make fettuccine. To prepare this type of pasta, you can also use a pasta maker. Troccoli are excellent with fresh basil tomato sauce and ricotta dura.
PASTA DOUGH RECIPE
Serves 4 people
- 400 g. of semolina flour
- 4 eggs
- A pinch of salt
- Water as needed
To prepare for making the pasta, sprinkle some flour over a large wooden cutting board. Then place the semolina flour together on the flat surface, create a cavity in the center, and add the eggs to the center of the cavity. Start to work the pasta by having the flour absorb the eggs; continue to massage the pasta until you have a dough. You need to work the pasta for about 5 minutes until you are able to make smooth dough. Place the pasta ball under a piece of cloth so it does not dry.
Divide the dough into 4-5 small pieces; keep one piece and set the other aside underneath the kitchen cloth. Flatten the pasta with a rolling pin by hand until it reaches a small rectangle with the thickness of ½ cm. Place each rectangle of dough on the guitar and press on with a rolling pin so that the strings cut the dough and fall to make the so called “troccoli”, then place them on a tray, add a little flour to keep them dry and separated, covering them always. Continue this process with the remaining dough.
PREPARATION OF TOMATO SAUCE WITH BASIL
The most important ingredient in tomato sauce with basil is fresh ripe cherry tomatoes. If tomatoes are not in season or if you don’t have time to make fresh tomato sauce, you can always buy a bottle of tomato sauce from our shop page. If you have fresh ripe cherry tomatoes, you will need a traditional stainless steel food mill or strainer to make the tomatoes into a puree.
Serves 4 people Ingredients:
- 750 ml of tomato sauce OR 1 kg of fresh cherry tomatoes
- 4/5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- a pinch of salt
- 10 fresh basil leaves
- 1 clove of garlic
- Ricotta dura
Next in a large pot, place extra virgin olive oil on low heat and then add a clove of garlic. When the garlic will be slightly golden, pour the tomato sauce (either the one you just made or from a tomato jar), a pinch of salt and half of your basil (about 5 leaves). Now that all the ingredients have been poured into the pan, you just need to cover it with a lid, making sure to leave a little space for the water vapor to escape. In short, do not cover the entire pan with a lid! This will allow the sauce to cook and dry. Turn the sauce occasionally with a wooden spoon and let boil for about 20 minutes.After the time for cooking, we suggest you try it, to realize whether it should be adjusted salt. Now turn off the heat and add the rest of the basil to the sauce.Cook the Troccoli in salted water (don`t add olive oil!), drain and toss with a little ‘of tomato sauce. Place on the plate, drizzle with more sauce and serve with grated “ricotta dura”.