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We throw together some Pasta all'Amatriciana with stuff we have around the house, and tell you how the pros do it, too.Pasta all'Amatriciana means “pasta the way they make it in Amatrice,” a town in northern Lazio in Riete province near the Gran Sasso and Monti della Laga National Park. The town has been quite damaged by a recent earthquake, but will rise again if you eat all your spaghetti all'Amatriciana and the stones get picked up and reused.First off, the recipe used in the video below requires a little explanation. This is not the correct recipe. No, the correct way to make pasta all'Amatriciana is to use guanciale (cured pork cheek) in place of what we show above, pancetta. Pancetta is more readily available, however, and is widely used in this dish in Italian restaurants. If you’re in the US, or in a vacation rental in Italy outside of Lazio, you might be better off with this recipe for the sauce, since it should be easy to procure any of the ingredients, wherever you are. The dish is finished off with a good Pecorino, which gives it more zip than Parmigiano, and defines it as a rustic, rural dish from a region where sheep thrive better than cows. We’ve also used a type of pasta that’s not allowed to be used with this sauce, and doesn’t go with it to tell the truth, but it was on hand. It’s not something one should be proud of. Use spaghetti–or Bucatini if you have it. Otherwise, use what’s in the house, just don’t tell die-hard Amatriciana fans about your heathen desregard for tradition (and really, Italians have thought these things out very, very well and the sauce is better with the pasta that it’s designed for). Also, many cooks like to use lots of black pepper instead of the hot red ones.
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