rye pasta with cucumber, scallions, fresh chili, fennel flower


I’ve written before about how much I like Sfoglini pasta (quality, variety of forms and content, seasonal specialties, local origin, striated surfaces). On Tuesday evening I finished the second half of my package of their ‘Rye Trumpets’ (the Italians call the shape, ‘campanelle’, or bells, suggesting these), this time adding an ingredient as rare as, or more rare than that pasta: sautéed cucumbers; more exotic still, they were a variety most people have never seen, Jamaica Burr.


  • Jamaica Burr cucumbers from Norwich Meadows Farm, sliced about 1/4″ thick, dried, sautéed in a little olive oil over a fairly high flame until beginning to color, and then one very small, seeded, finely-chopped red Calabrian pepper from Campo Rosso Farm and several chopped scallions added, in that order, near the end, the vegetables seasoned with salt and pepper before they were mixed with half a pound of Sfoglini rye blend ‘trumpets which were cooked seriously al dente, everything (including some of the reserved pasta water) tossed and stirred over a low-to-moderate flame for a couple of minutes to blend the flavors and the ingredients, served sprinkled with fennel flowers from Ryder Farm
  • the wine was an Italian (Alto Adige/Südtirol) white, from Chelsea Wine VaultLa Manina Manincor 2013
  • the music was Mozart divertimentos/serenades, from the 3-disc album, ‘Mozart: Complete Wind Music‘, in performances by the London Wind Soloists , directed by Jack Brymer