Remembering Amatrice and the Earthquake

It was about this time four years ago (August 23, 2016 to be exact), that we were anguished and saddened by the earthquake at Amatrice. At that time, it seemed the world banded together in solidarity by cooking the famous dish….. Spaghetti alla Amatriciana!

We can’t take full credit for this great Spaghetti alla Amatriciana. First credit goes to the fabulous ingredients (they do make a difference!) and recipe inspiration goes to Julia Della Croce. We used her recipe but subbed the Passata di Pomodoro from Masseria Mirogallo for the fresh tomatoes and tomato paste. (Hey, it was a Friday night — venerdi sera– after work, after all).

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (Norcellara or Carolea from Tenute Librandi)

1/2 small onion, finely chopped

4 ounces pancetta (because it is very difficult to find guanciale)

1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes, or to taste

250 gr Ravida Sea Salt

4 tablespoons freshly grated semi-aged pecorino (cacio romano), or good pecorino romano, plus more for serving

500 grams (1.1 lb) imported Italian spaghetti or bucatini  (Gragnano in Corsa Pasta)

2 tablespoons kosher salt for cooking pasta

Prepare the pasta and the sauce following Julia Della Croce’s recipe. Saute the pancetta and onions, add the tomatoes, red pepper, and salt. Add a portion of Pecorino. Cook and drain the pasta, reserving some pasta water. Coat the pasta with a portion of Pecorino, before combining the pasta and sauce. 30-40 minutes, start to finish, for a fabulous meal.

This is an updated version of a recipe originally posted in August 2016.

A special thank you to Great Country Farms CSA for the produce!