Matching pasta sauces with pasta shapes is an Italian talent that is underappreciated in the US. Usually there is some wriggle room in the choice, but with some classic style sauces, one particular pasta is almost mandatory. bob has some sense of this but is fortunately unencumbered by the experience of growing up brainwashed by traditional combinations. When the full page photo of this recipe stared bob down when he opened it at random from one of the two bargain paperback pasta books in his office kept there for last minute consultation before heading to the store on the way home, it was clear that rigatoni were mandatory. Of course whole grain pasta is now another high priority, so there was not a lot of hopeful expectation that bob would find the right shape when he stopped at the new supermarket right next to campus for a quick supply buy prior to the experiment. What a pleasant surprise to find several DeCecco whole wheat pastas, a low carb mix in several shapes, and several style bionaturae whole durum wheat pastas, including the target type: rigatoni! Those big floppy noodle tubes, once they're cooked, coated with the right sauce. Yum.
We bought these two bargain paperbacks on impulse since they were so cheap and seemed to show some promise, but rather than bring them home and add them to our cooking library (thus violating our ban on buying more photo packed pasta books that would sit unused on the shelf), we left them at the office so they could provide last minute supper ideas before going to the store on the way home for dinner. Since after is usually too late. Unfortunately they sat unused for this purpose for several years until this occasion. Better late than never.
|what they said||what we did|
|3 T olive oil||3 T olive oil|
|2 shallots, chopped||1 small onion, grated|
|8 rashers streaky bacon, chopped (optional)||2 1/8 inch slices pancetta, chopped into small pieces|
|2 t crushed dried red chillies||1 t red pepper flakes|
|14oz can chopped tomatoes with garlic and herbs||14.5oz can chili style diced tomatoes, plus
8oz can garlic tomato sauce
|6 slices white bread||4 slices whole wheat bread|
|1/2 c butter||1/4 c (=1/2 stick=2oz) butter|
|2 garlic cloves, chopped||2 garlic cloves, pessed|
|1 lb rigatoni||1 lb whole durum wheat rigatoni|
|salt and freshly ground black pepper||salt and freshly ground black pepper|
|freshly grated parmigiano on each serving|