Spaghetti alla Gricia

The Italian region of Lazio (which is the region around Rome) has some of the best simple pasta dishes: Spaghetti alla Carbonara, Spaghetti Cacio e Pepe, Spaghetti all’Amatriciana, and Spaghetti alla Gricia. The ingredients that all of them have in common are spaghetti, pecorino romano cheese, and freshly ground black pepper. Three of them have guanciale, two of them use the pasta cooking water, one has eggs, and one has tomatoes.

I had not blogged about alla Gricia yet, which is also known as Amatriciana ‘in Bianco’ because it is the same as Amatriciana but without the tomatoes. The recipe for alla Gricia is very simple: spaghetti, guanciale, pecorino romano, salt, and black pepper. It is not only very simple but also very tasty! Continue reading “Spaghetti alla Gricia”

Penne with Bell Peppers and Pancetta

This is a quick and simple weekday pasta dish that came about when I wanted to make Penne with Bell Peppers and Salami, but only had pancetta available. You could also think of this as Penne all’Amatriciana with added bell peppers. This dish turned out to be better balanced than the version with salami, as that is a bit high in acidity. But the most important thing is that you get a lot of flavor for not a lot of work. Ingredients For 2 servings 2 red bell peppers 100 grams (4 oz) of pancetta, diced 150-200 grams (1/3-1/2 pound) … Continue reading Penne with Bell Peppers and Pancetta

Vongole with Pancetta

I was intrigued by PutneyFarms’s combination of clams with bacon, so I decided to give this a try even though I had never heard of this in Italy. Of course I did have to Italify things slightly by using pancetta rather than bacon and parsley rather than thyme. The combination of vongole with pancetta worked well: the tastes complement each other. It is nice to serve with crusty homemade bread to soak op the juices, although those turn out quite salty. This dish has a lot of taste for the small amount of work involved. Ingredients For 3-4 servings as an … Continue reading Vongole with Pancetta

Spaghetti all’Amatriciana

The pasta sauce “Amatriciana” comes from the town of Amatrice, on the border of Lazio and Abruzzo. In Amatrice they serve it over spaghetti, and that’s what I have done. This dish has been taken over by the Romans, and they serve it over bucatini (thick hollow spaghetti). The original version is now called Spaghetti alla Gricia or all’Amatriciana bianca (white Amatriciana) and does not have tomatoes, because tomatoes were not available in Italy (or anywhere else in Europe) before they were imported from the Americas. The original Amatriciana or Gricia calls for guanciale (cured pork jowl), but that is … Continue reading Spaghetti all’Amatriciana

Orecchiette with Endive and Pancetta (Orecchiette Indivia e Pancetta)

This is my most successful attempt at Dutch-Italian fusion and I make it quite often as it is as quick and easy to prepare as it is delicious! The flavors of the bitter endive, the sweet pancetta, the freshness of the white wine and the heartiness (umami) of the parmigiano blend really well. Just like most Italian dishes, the result will depend on the quality of the ingredients. This dish will taste best if you use actual pancetta, fresh endive (rather than already cut when you buy it), freshly grated nutmeg, freshly grated parmigiano and artisan orechiette. The classic Dutch … Continue reading Orecchiette with Endive and Pancetta (Orecchiette Indivia e Pancetta)