- Ancient flavours and fragrances
of the Sorrentine Peninsule -
The first forms of alimentary pasta
(Translated by Marianna Mastro)
is not easy to identify the first forms of the Italian pasta, but for the
pasta, which concerns the Campania region, it was very probably the “Ndunderi”,
the “Lagane”, the “Ricci”, which were created
by the inspiration of ancient housewives and handed on from master pasta
or maccheroni makers of the Sorrentine Coast.
Fig. 1 - The 'ndunderi'.
The “ndunderi” origin from very far away, and they
can be very easily defined the natural descendants of the “polenta
caseata di farro” or of the flour kneaded with the curdled milk
and the fig-tree milk, worked into small balls and cooked in boiling water.
They are produced
with a dough made of flour and curdled milk, while in order to make the
operation much easier, the curdled milk can be substituted with plain yogurt
or sieved cow cottage cheese. The dough is then worked into a rope shaped
not too thick or thin and then sliced into small pieces, as one prefers,
these pieces are then hollowed by pressing one or two fingers on them according
to the size cut.
The “ndunderi” were seasoned with cheese and aromatic
spices or with a very appreciated cold dressing made of parsley, garlic,
fennel leaf, sheep milk cheese, salt, walnuts and extra virgin oil.
During the years, this dish has been subject to many variations and arrangements
up to being completely cancelled together with its name with the arrival
of the Post Colombian period as we will see further ahead.
The “lagane” is pasta widely present in the entire
Campania region. They are produced by a blend of flour, water and salt and
in very thin sheets of pasta with the press ion obtained on the pasta
with the “laganaturo” (a cylindrical and smooth piece
of wood wide about 4/5 cm. and long 50 cm.) the pasta is then cut in stripes
of 1 cm.
The “lagane” as we previously said, can be compared
to the modern “pappardelle” and
they are very palatable when magnificently combined with a sauce of
tender chickpeas boiled for a long time with oil, fresh garlic and plenty
parsley. This dish is eaten as a tradtion on November 2 in order to mitigate
sadness of the day.
The “ricci” is a pasta whose invention is awarded
to the master pasta makers of the Sorrentine Coast who were able to wind
ability on a thin piece of wire a thin “rope” of pasta obtained
by rubbing the dough of flour, salt and water on the “spianatoio”;
a round shaped piece of wood on which was blended and worked with great
strength of the arms the pasta obtained.
The “ricci” are
compared to the “fusilli” and were
seasoned with the same dressings used for the “ndunderi”.
Exactly like the “ndunderi” they were subject to great transformations
upon the arrrival of the products from the new world.