The idle ramblings of a Jack of some trades, Master of none

Dec 25, 2013

Amatriciana Noir

As we have seen, the contamination of foodiness has spread across Italian crime noir. Here is the perfect pasta amatriciana, according to a thug in Giampiero Rigosi's Night Bus. Just the thing to cook while waiting for the mark to show up in the apartment.

"It's an old question. There are those who say that the true amatriciana, the original, was white, that is, without tomatoes. Pork cheek cut in strips and browned, to which you add only hot pepper and a generous amount of grated pecorino. Others don't agree. Who said that one must go back to historical research? I, for my part, don't give a damn about history. The best known amatriciana is the one with tomato. Except that usually it's made with pancetta, but this is another subject. The fact is that almost no one uses pork cheek anymore. Like lard, fat and all the other stuff that has gone out of fashion. As if the crap people eat today were good for your health. For example, I feel sick to my stomach at the idea of a soy beefsteak. What the fuck is a soy beefsteak? Does it seem logical that, with all the meat we have available, we should start concocting fake beefsteak, using shit like soy? Anyway, to return to our amatriciana, there are some who sauté the pork by itself, with a drop of oil, or even with a chopped onion. Then, of course, you add the hot pepper, the crushed tomatoes and the pecorino. This is definitely the most common recipe. But I've worked out a couple of small variations. Pay attention. First of all, I heat a spoonful of oil in a pan with a couple of crushed slivers of garlic. As soon as the garlic colours, I take it out and throw in the pork cheek, cut in strips. I sauté it for a bit, then pour a couple of spoonfuls of dry white wine over it. As soon as the wine hits the hot pork, it creates a steam that fills your nostrils with perfume and opens up the stomach nicely. In this way the pork cheek loses its fat and becomes crusty and had a delicious taste. When it browns, I add the pepper and some tomato purée. I cook it down until I get a thick sauce, then I sprinkle it with a spoonful of chopped basil. When the spaghetti is cooked, I drain it and put it in the pan along with the sauce and a generous amount of cheese. Half pecorino and half Parmigiano. What a perfume. Come on, don't tell me you don't want to taste it." 
Diolaiti looks with disgust at the giant plate that Garofano has filled.


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