Pizzoccheri

The plain cooking of country folk in Valtellina is to be found in a typical dish known and popular throughout Italy. Pizzocheri from Valtellina PGI are pasta made from buckwheat flour. Their origins date back to 1750. Originally from Siberia, buckwheat has been grown in Valtellina since the seventeenth century.

The original recipe of this typical dish is jealously guarded by the Academy of the Pizzocchero in Teglio - www.accademiadelpizzocchero

Ingredients for 4 people

  • 400 g buckwheat flour
  • 100 g plain flour
  • 200 g butter
  • 250 g Valtellina Casera PDO (protected designation of origin) cheese
  • 150 g grana cheese for grating
  • 200 g savoy cabbage
  • 250 g potatoes
  • a clove of garlic, pepper
 

Preparation:

Mix the two different flours together, add the water and knead for about 5 minutes. Roll out the pasta with a rolling pin until it is 2-3 millimetres thick and cut into 7-8 centimetre strips. Put the strips one on top of another and cut across to give ribbons of pasta about 5 millimetres wide. Cut the cabbage and potatoes into small pieces and cook in salted water; add the pizzoccheri after 5 minutes. Potatoes can be found all year round, unlike the savoy cabbage which can be replaced, depending on the season, with chard or runner beans.  After about ten minutes, take out with a slotted spoon and  put a layer into a heated oven dish, sprinkle with grated grana cheese and shavings of Valtellina Casera PDO and continue to repeat the layers in the same way. Fry the garlic in the butter until well coloured, then pour it over the pizzoccheri. Do not stir but serve boiling hot with a twist of pepper.