Tagliatelle di Romagna

A lot of local people consider “tagliatelle” the native queens of the home-made pasta.

they are made in occasion of holiday or important lunch to share with friends, dressed not only with a bolognese sauce, but also with an abundant splash of parmesan. The surface of tagliatelle is grainy and rough, never smooth or slick, thanks to a good flour, fresh eggs, short and accurate cooking: the result is a one-egg portion of pasta for each guest.

Some good Romagna chefs know that good tagliatelle mean a good “azdora” (the woman that prepares the home-made pasta) that is to say her art technique, her body movements (flankers and buttoks in primis), her warm hands, the secret of the rolling pin movement, the energic heavy handwork, the thickness of the pasta , the pause to make the pasta ball rest covered by a towel for half an hour.

The result is a soft and solid pasta ball, homogeneous and elastic. in case of pasta too soft, you can add more flour or, on the contrary, if it is too solid, you have to add warm water.

After this hard hand work, the pasta must rest for a while to dry out a bit, then it will be wrapped like an accordion , ready to be cut with a sharp knife,  in the desired width and in dimensions suitable for the right sauce (wider for pork sauce or thinner for herbs sauce) .

The tagliatelle are then unwrapped and lied down on the board. the thickness of the tagliatelle can be 5-6 mm or 8-9 mm; the “pappardelle” instead, which are obtained by means of a fluted wheel, could reach 12 mm.

There are many other rules to have a good final result: put the tagliatelle in a boiling  abundantly salted water, then mildly mix them by a wooden spoon in order to scatter the pasta; as soon as they surface from the boiling water, they will be ready to be drained. turn off the fire, add fresh water to block the cooking, pour into the dish, add first the parmesan and then the sauce.

Otherwise you can just pan-fry the tagliatelle, but faster, being careful not to overcook them.

Typical spring-time sauces loved by local Romagna people are bolognese sauce or made with sausage , chicken chitterlings, ham, truffle, mushroom, rabbit or bacon .

A tip conveyed to modern times from the “azdore” of the ancient times, is to add to the  sauce a little sugar to prevent and avoid acidity of the tomato.

Anyway, in the past, a lot of local people have eaten huge quantities of tagliatelle, when it was possible.



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