Frittata di pasta porn (and recipes)

After I made Spaghetti al Pomodoro the other night for dinner (in this case bucatini), Tracie P used the leftover noodles to make a Neapolitan-style Frittata di Pasta. The dish was so stunning, visually and otherwise sensorially, that I was compelled to document it. After all, this is my “web log” after all, isn’t it? Enjoy… and thanks for reading!

frittata di pasta

Spaghetti al Pomodoro

As my good friend Renato dal Piva taught me (when I used to play in his clubs in the Bellunese), you should be able to get the tomato sauce simmering by the time the water boils. By the time the pasta is done cooking, the sauce will be ready.

Finely chop ¼ medium size white or yellow onion and sautée with a handful of flat-leaf parsley together and one lightly crushed garlic clove in extra-virgin olive oil. When the onion becomes translucent , add 1½ cup puréed, crushed, or whole canned cherry tomato (if using whole Roma tomatoes, crush the tomatoes using a spatula). Add ¼ cup room-temperature white wine. Season with kosher salt, pepper, and crushed chili flakes. Simmer until the pasta is not quite cooked through (about 1-2 minutes under the suggested cooking time).

frittata di pasta

In the meantime, bring a large pot of water to boil. After it begins to boil, season with a generous handful of kosher salt. Cook the spaghetti until not quite cooked through (as above). About 3 minutes before the pasta is done, add ½ ladleful of its cooking water to the sauce. When the pasta done, fold the noodles into the sauce and toss over low heat. Serve hot, drizzled with a drop or two of extra-virgin olive oil and with freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano on the side (ironically, I prefer not to sprinkle with the cheese, despite my northern tastes, while Tracie P, with her southern tastes, opts for cheese).

For the tomato sauce, our favorite brand is La Valle, in particular its cherry tomatoes (pomodorini). We also like Muir tomatoes from California and Progresso is good, too. The important thing is to find tomatoes to which nothing but salt has been added (Del Monte, Hunt’s etc. will all work fine). In summer months when fresh basil is available, omit the flat-leaf parsley and add torn basil leaves after the tomato sauce has begun to simmer.)

For the pasta, we used La Valle bucatini that Alfonso had brought us from Jimmy’s Food Market in Dallas. As far as commercial, easy-to-find brands are concerned, Tracie P likes DeCecco (her southern tastes), while I like Barilla (my northern tastes).

frittata di pasta

Frittata di Pasta

Beat two eggs with a handful of freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano, add the beaten eggs to the leftover pasta in a mixing bowl, and toss gently. Cover the bottom of a small pan with extra-virgin olive (about 2 tablespoons depending on the size of the pan) and heat over medium-flame. As soon as the oil begins to smoke, add the pasta and cover. Cook for 2-3 minutes and then reduce heat to low. Cook for 20 minutes and flip (to flip, quickly remove cover and then recover with a ceramic plate; hold the plate in place, swiftly turn the frying pan over and then slide the frittata back in the pan). Cook for another ten minutes and serve hot.

Once cooled, wrap the frittata in plastic wrap and conserve in the fridge. It will be great, sliced on bread or re-warmed. With the quantities above, Tracie P and I obtain 3 meals!

Buon appetito, ya’ll!

13 thoughts on “Frittata di pasta porn (and recipes)

  1. 1 – this looks so great I’m stuffing my face again. (When I was a kid we just made it with spaghetti and called it “spaghetti pie.” 2 – I did not know there existed (nor have I found) pomodorini in a can in the US. I am re-energized to resume my search. Thank you, Jeremy!

  2. It’s funny how there are “DeCecco” homes and “Barilla” homes. What can I say? We’re a “mixed marriage.” ;-) Rustichella d’Abruzzo is probably our favorite pastasciutta and I used the La Valle for this dish.

    I’m so glad that everyone enjoyed the post so much! :-) I wish I was a better photographer: Tracie P’s frittata was SO AMAZING just to look at!

  3. I’ve always eaten Barilla: after all, “dove c’è Barilla, c’è casa.” Plus a reliable source that an original Picasso hangs in their headquarters in Parma. But my home uses plenty of De Cecco as well, though it depends on the mood and dish in question. Barilla’s spaghetti for instance is significantly narrower than De Cecco and resembles most other brands’ spaghettini.

    Sometimes these preferences have less to do with taste or texture. For much of the 1980s the logos of Barilla and Buitoni were emblazoned across the soccer jerseys of Roma and Napoli respectively, creating an instant brand affinity based on fan loyalty.

    A friend of mine used to insist on Voiello (another former Napoli sponsor), which is now owned by Barilla Group, but I’ve never seen it in the United States. As a child I remember my mum using Napolina a lot: http://www.napolina.com/

  4. james–wish i could find garofalo more often ’round here. for me, de cecco is much more ruvida, a quality that i insist upon. and i like my spaghetti a little less “-ini.” good thing we have a scelta! :)

  5. Tracie P, you’re right: De Cecco does have una certa ruvidezza in contrast to Barilla’s slip slidin’ texture, which gives the sugo something to hang onto. Please tell your husband I purchased a used copy of “Pasolini Reqiuem” today from the Strand. I assume he’s read it. Buona domenica.

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