I’ve become very fond of Sfoglini pasta, for the quality, the variety of its forms and ingredients, its seasonal products, their local origin, and of course the beautiful coarse (and functional) texture of the dry product’s surfaces, as seen above in the picture of their ‘Rye Trumpets’ (a shape the Italians called ‘campanelle’ [or bells, suggesting these], which I prepared on Tuesday evening).
The night was cool, and a little damp. I hadn’t planned anything in particular for dinner, but something earthy seemed it order. Also, we had just come from a visit to Collective Design, so naturally even before getting home I was already thinking of the several different Sfoglini pasta designs and ‘flavors’ sitting in the larder.
Note: The great Italian car designer, Giorgetto Giugiaro, is responsible for one of the most intriguing and aesthetically pleasing pasta designs of our time, his 1983 Voiello Marille.
While we didn’t have any marille on hand, we did have Sfoglini’s ‘organic rye blend trumpets’. I love anything rye, and while trying to come up with a sauce, the rye reference made me think of German-isch lands. I then remembered that I had a modest amount of something sympathetic to rye in our crisper, a kernel of a red cabbage, probably enough to make something to mix with the pasta. It was a remnant from the preparations for a meal almost 3 weeks back (I love that brassica for its toughness almost as much as for its taste).
Altogether it sounded like it was going to be a northern Italian treat, so we pulled out a familiar and very good Pinot Grigio from the wine rack and quickly chilled it.
- eight ounces of dry Sfoglini rye blend trumpet pasta, cooked al dente in a large pot of salted water, some of the water reserved near the end before it was drained, added to a large enameled cast iron pot in which earlier one thinly-sliced red onion from Norwich Meadows Farm had been softened in a couple tablespoons of ‘Kerrygold Pure Irish Butter‘, to be followed by 3 small minced garlic cloves from Whole Foods, stirred until fragrant, 3 or 4 rosemary branches from Stokes Farm tossed in and heated for a minute or so, more butter added at that point, followed by about half a pound of cored and thinly-sliced red cabbage from Eataly, stirred well and cooked, covered, for about 15-20 minutes, or until tender, near the end of the cooking a few tablespoons of balsamic vinegar poured in, followed by a handful of chopped green sections of fresh garlic from Bodhitree Farm, everything stirred again, the pasta now added to the cabbage, and some of the reserved water introduced to the mix in stages and stirred above a low flame to keep it moist, served with freshly-grated Parmesan cheese from Whole Foods sprinkled on top
- the wine was an excellent Italian (Alto Adige/Südtirol) white, St. Michael-Eppan Pinot Grigio 2014 [the link is to a 2013 vintage on a 67wine.com page, the people from whom we had bought this wine in years before], purchased from Philippe Liquors, making this super Germanic Pinot Gris almost ‘locavore’
- the music was Symphony No 8, Op. 81 “Autumnal Fragments”, by Aulis Sallinen