soppressata; lemon and ricotta-filled agnolotti, pea greens

We were back in Italy, at home last night, where we listened to an Italian-language opera which declaimed the virtues of Flavius Aetius (Ezio), ‘the last of the Romans’ (even thought he was half German).

  • four ounces of Applegate uncured soppressata from Whole Foods Market, drizzled with a very good Sicilian olive oil, Azienda Agricola Mandranova (exclusively Nocellara olives), arranged at the edge of a generous spray of washed and dried arugula from Lani’s Farm that had been dressed with the same oil, a bit of Maldon salt and freshly-ground black pepper, and served with slices of a fantastic dark and dense rusty bread that had been baked inside Flatiron Eataly, ‘Mediterraneo’ (whole rye flour, stone-milled wheat flour, 5 seeds, plus millet and faro)
  • two or 3 tablespoons of Organic Valley ‘Cultured Pasture Butter’ melted inside a large antique high-sided tin-lined copper pot, joined by a crushed piece of dried orange habanada pepper, some sea salt and freshly-ground black  pepper, allowed to continue heating for a minute, at least a tablespoon of zest from an organic Whole Foods Market lemon stirred in, 12 ounces of a fresh lemon & ricotta-filled agnolotti made in Luca Donofrio‘s fresh pasta shop, also inside the Flatiron Eataly emporium, that had been cooked until very al dente (2 minutes?) and drained, and about half a cup of pasta cooking water added and gradually stirred in while the pot was over a medium-to-medium-high flame, stirred for about one minute, or until the liquid had emulsified and the sauce had become smooth and creamy, finally divided between 2 shallow low bowls, a bit of Parmigiano Reggiano Hombre from Whole Foods Market grated over the top, and the pasta garnished with pea greens from Windfall Farms
  • the wine was a lovely Italian (Campania) white, Colli di Lapio Fiano di Avellino 2015, from Garnet Wines
  • the music was Gluck’s 1750 (pre-reform) opera, ‘Ezio’, with a libretto by Metastasio, Alan Curtis conducting the ensemble , Il Complesso Barocco