Did you know there are more than 400 different types of Pasta in the world? If you multiply that number by the vast amount of Italian sauces and fillings available, you can understand why people are so confused by the sheer amount of pasta recipes and dishes to choose from.
With all this sea of confusion, I hear you screaming “What are the best authentic Italian pasta recipes and dishes to make?!
Well here it is, we at Love Italian Life have taken the careful time to produce a definitive list of 7 Sensational Pasta Recipes To Blow Your Mind!
1. Spaghetti alle Vongole (Spaghetti and Clams)
This is the summer dish of choice for many Italians and is popular because of how simple, quick and easy it is to prepare. The beautiful combination of mixing spaghetti with clams is popular all over Italy especially in the major cities and smaller coastal villages that have a tradition for great seafood.
Here is a helpful tasty recipe from the Guardian.
2. Sausage, Radicchio and Lemon Gnocchi
Potato Gnocchi (nocca means knuckle in Italian) is a pasta of soft potato dumplings that originated from Roman times and is a common first course (primo piatto) across all parts of Italy. Gnocchi can be made from wheat flour, cheese, egg or potato with a large choice of sauce combinations such as pesto.
We have decided to introduce you to a unique Sausage, Radicchio and Lemon Gnocchi recipe from BBC food Chef James Martin.
3. Rigatoni ai Carciofi (Artichokes)
Rigatoni is a tube shaped pasta that is very popular in southern and central Italy due to it having unique and characteristic ridges down their length. Rigatoni is a specialty in Sicily because the design of the pasta allows it to absorb Parmesan cheese and various different types of sauces.
We feel that one of the most tasty pairings is Rigatoni ai Carciofi (artichokes) and we have an excellent recipe you can check out here from Food Republic.
4. Spaghetti alla Carbonara
Spaghetti Carbonara is one of the most widely cooked Italian pasta dishes in the world and infuses an interesting mix of eggs, olive oil, Pecorino Romano cheese, black pepper and pancetta (cured fatty pork). There are many legends and stories as to the origins of the dish, with one myth being that the recipe was made to give energy to Italian coal miners as ‘carbonara’ means ‘coal miner’s wife’.
We have chosen this classic recipe from Antonio Carluccio.
5. Ligurian Pesto with Spaghetti
Pesto has taken International cuisine by storm over the last few decades and there are few better to compliment pasta then this unique combination of crushed garlic, basil, European pine nuts, olive oil and the Parmigiano-Reggiano and Fiore Sardo cheeses. Genoa in the Italian region of Liguria is considered to be the birthplace of the original ‘pesto alla genovese’ recipe.
Here you can find a tasty Ligurian Pesto with Spaghetti recipe from Bon Appétit.
6. Pappardelle with Ragù
If you have not been fortunate enough to have eaten the traditional Italian meat sauce Ragù then prepare yourself to enjoy one of the powerhouses of great Italian cuisine. In northern Italy, Ragu is traditionally a sauce of meat that is minced, chopped and cooked with vegetables in a liquid which often include tomatoes. Southern Italian regions such as Campania cook popular variations such as ragù alla Napoletana and carne a ragù.
The first Ragù sauce is said to be ragù for maccheroni, which was prepared by the cook to the Cardinal of Imola, Alberto Alvisi and was famously known as The Cardinal’s Ragù. From the 1830s Ragu recipes appear frequently in cookbooks from the region of Emilia-Romagna and was first mainly eaten by the wealthier classes. However after the industrial revolution and World War 11, Ragu with pasta became more affordable and popular for the masses of Italy.
We have chosen Pappardelle which are large pasta noodles that are similar to fettuccine and taste great with Ragù.
Channel 4 have a nice quick and easy Pappardelle with Ragù recipe you can try here.
7. Tagliatelle With Zucchine (courgettes), Peas & Ricotta
Zucchine (or courgettes as they are also known) are very popular vegetables in Italian cuisine because they have a delicate flavour and can be cooked quickly. Ricotta is an Italian whey cheese which is commonly made from sheep, goat, cow or water buffalo. If you put these two ingredients together with spaghetti you have a fresh and tasty pasta dish which is simple to prepare.
Taste.com.au have a simple quick and easy Tagliatelle With Zucchine (courgettes), Peas & Ricotta Recipe here.
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About Anna Floriani
Anna writes about everything that makes Italian culture so special. Having lived and worked in Ireland and the UK for many years she is originally from le Marche in Italy while her zest and passion for life comes from raising her young family.