Saturday, September 19, 2009
Here Francesco Mazzei explains the reason for using better quality bronze die/cut pasta.
The quality and choice of pasta is very important as it affects the pasta water needed to create the perfect "emulsione" and determine retention ratio of this almost creamy sauce.
Better quality and artisanal pasta have certain key advantages over the key industrial brands . Firtstly they extrude their pasta through bronze dies hat leave microstriations (ridges, grooves, etc.) to capture and hold the sauce.
Second, they dry the pasta at lower temperatures. While this takes longer, it preserves the fine flavors of the wheat.
And finally I also have the impression that the quality of the starch in the pasta water (essential in this dish) is far superior.
I use Garofalo one of the producers from Gragnano reputed to be the best areas for dry pasta making as well as Guiseppe Cocco from Abruzzo another highly rated area . The latter is available in Waitrose whilst most good delis will sell at least one brand of high quality pasta.