Pasta with ’NDUJA, the “HOTTEST” Recipe from CALABRIA
If you love hot and spicy food, this is your recipe! From the beautiful Calabria region - the “toe of the Italian boot” - here comes ‘nduja, the absolute queen of southern salumi (alias salami)!
‘NDUJA, FROM THE “TOE OF THE BOOT”
Let’s start with the basics. According to tradition, ‘nduja was invented in the small town of Spilinga. ‘Nduja (pronounced n-doo-ya) is a savory and spicy cured pork meat. The uniqueness is the texture - because ‘nduja is smooth and spreadable, and the intense red color given by the chili peppers. For this reason, the Italian specialty is very adaptable. You can use it in a variety of recipes or you can simply spread it on a grilled bruschetta!
PASTA CON LA ‘NDUJA
If you want to impress your gourmand friends, try a delicious pasta with ‘nduja. The preparation is pretty simple, but the effect on your foodie guests is guaranteed! For four people you will need 10oz of your favorite pasta. You can choose among spaghetti, fusilli, trofie or even paccheri. Use a large pot and bring the water (5 or 6 quarters) to a boil. Add 3 tablespoons of salt once it starts to boiling. Now add the pasta and cook it. In the meantime, heat the extra virgin olive oil in a pan, add the chopped onion (the best choice is the Calabrian red onion from Tropea “la cipolla rossa") and cook until it turns golden. Add 10 chopped cherry tomatoes and let them cook for 7 or 10 minutes. Next, add 10 tablespoons of ‘nduja and stir until the salami has completely dissolved. Now, take a look to your pasta and be extremely careful: do not overcook it. Pasta should be cooked rigorously “al dente.” Drain your pasta and add it to the pan with the hot sauce. Cook them together for a minute and finish it with Parmigiano Reggiano or Pecorino for a stronger flavor. Sprinkle with freshly chopped parsley.
WINE PARING: GO WITH CALABRIAN RED!
The perfect wine paring calls for a nice glass of Cirò Rosso: rich and aromatic. The Calabria region has a long tradition of wine production. The best wines come from a district called Cirò, an ancient and sunbaked southern area with secular olive trees and spectacular vineyards. Cirò is a DOC (Controlled Designation of Origin certificated). The most famous is Cirò Rosso, from the Gaglioppo grape. Salute!
- Donatella Mulvoni