Before 1550, Italian pasta didn’t come with red sauce. Instead it was prepared with olive oil and herbs. When Spain occupied the kingdom of Naples in the 16th century, they brought the tomato to popularity in the region. Marinara sauce was developed in Naples, Italy around 1550, nearly 200 years before the rest of Europe.
Marinara sauce means sailor type tomato sauce, and it is a basic, versatile tomato sauce. It is said that the sauce was originally developed by the Neapolitan wives of fishermen. After a long day out at sea the fishemen would come home hungry. The wives would quickly make a tomato sauce and toss in the catch of the day to flavor it. Who better to trust to make a delicious Marinara Sauce but none other than Napolitano’s—aka Neapolitans!
Besides being a great pasta sauce, Marinara is also used in a variety of recipes. Having a jar of 825 Main Marinara Sauce in the cupboard is living la vita gustosa (living a tasty life!)
Try one of the following recipes using our versatile 825 MAIN Marinara sauce.
These past two weekends I enjoyed giving seminars to the customers of Adams Fairacre Farms in Poughkeepsie and in Wappinger Falls. During the dreary winter months in January and February Adams Fairacre Farms gives the customers an opportunity to learn and enjoy some interesting subjects! I was invited to share what I know as well. So I gladly jumped in the fun. I decided to bring everyone on a tour of Northern Italy’s pasta and sauces. Not only did I set the mood with Italian music I set up the props. On display was a painting of Tuscany set on an easel. The table was set with an vivid Italian table cloth set with grapevine baskets filled with oranges. Incidentally my grandfather made the huge basket from the vines from his vineyard. A separate table was set up with my portable kitchen. My wonderful husband and daughter helped serve while lots of customers came to experience the fun event. It was so fun that I decided to share with you all the fun facts and experience of this Tour of Northern Italy Pasta and Sauces. But let me start off with some of my observations with our American pasta culture versus Italian. Let me say I am an American in an Italian restaurant family so I am fully aware of our American pasta culture. But when I go to Italy the differences are so obvious. Is one wrong and the other right? No! It’s just a cultural difference. But it’s fun to compare!
Some Pasta Facts
I will start off with
talking about some misconceptions we Americans have about pasta.
Americans seem to think that pasta to be good must be made freshly by hand.
Best way is made by an Italian grandmother using a rolling pin
2. or by a machine that some of us have in
or ready-made fresh pasta that we can find right here at Adams.
Americans think of dry pasta or in Italian (pasta secca) found in boxes and plastic bags as substandard.
But no! In
Italy most Italians eat dry pasta that comes out of a box! An exception is the
northern region! In Northern Italy fresh
pasta is quite popular and most families make their own.
Fresh Pasta Facts
Italy uses more fresh pasta than Southern Italy
is usually made from softer wheats, though some durum semolina can be mixed in,
and some is made with just durum, but that takes a lot of strength to work
south, some fresh pasta is made with just flour and water, but in the north it
is almost always made with flour, eggs, salt and water. If it is to be used for
stuffing, as in ravioli, a little milk is sometimes added.
6 major differences with the way we make pasta in the US
We overcook the pasta
According to Italians the biggest mistake that we Americans make is overcooking the pasta. We all know what aldente is. But pasta must be served as soon as it is drained. It gets a little crazy at my house when we drain the pasta. My husband dishes out pasta. I sauce it. The kids pass out the dishes. We must be fast! Pasta is very important.
2.Cook in too little water
But another problem with making pasta is using too
little water. A pound of pasta should be
cooked in 5 quarts of salted water vigorously boiling. Too little water stews the pasta making it
gummy and overcooked. Believe me, I too am guilty of this. Sometimes I am too lazy to go to the cupboard
and get the big pasta potout thinking it’s just my husband and I. It’s a big mistake. The pasta doesn’t cook evenly and the pasta
Cooking the perfect pasta.
Make sure its 5 quarts of
water per pound of pasta.
Bring to a boil.
Add 2 tablespoons of salt.
Place pasta in boiling
It will quickly come to a
When pasta is done. 5-6 minutes (more for thicker pasta less for
thinner like spaghettini or angel hair.
Remove and drain but not
too thoroughly. Save 2 ladles of pasta
3. Adding Oil to water
When you add oil to the cooking water for pasta will only make the pasta slippery and harder for the sauce to get absorbed into the pasta. Your pasta will lack the flavor of the sauce.
4. Huge Portions
When it comes to eating pasta, Italians are very measurement conscious. And it’s a very easy formula to follow: 100 grams (3-1/2 ounces) or less of pasta per person.
It is never a heaping portion like one you would expect in the States.” In the ’90s, Los Angeles Italian restaurants routinely served pasta in giant bowls, each portion enough to feed three or four.
The point of the dish is not the sauce but the pasta. There should be just enough sauce to coat each strand lightly. There shouldn’t be puddles of sauce congealing in the bottom of the dish.
5. Oversauce the pasta
A way to get the most flavor into the pasta about a minute or 2 before it’s done strain it. Saving a ladle of pasta water then toss it in with the sauce and a ladle of the pasta water. Let it finish cooking on the stove. And then quickly serve it. This is called “pasta saltata in padella”. But some further explanation of the sauce. They don’t call it sauce or salsa. They refer to it as condimento or condiment. The condimento is just about a ¼ cup per serving
6. Too much cheese on pasta
Cheese is just a scant teaspoonful per
serving. In Italy the waiters come and
quickly grate a little cheese on the pasta.
In our restaurant if the waitstaff weren’t attending each table to
grating the cheese they would go and try to sprinkle a teaspoon of cheese. But typically, the waitstaff we be grating
and dumping loads of cheese on top of pasta!
Italian cooking is an art of simplicity and balance. It’s recognizing that less
is often so much better than more. AS I
often talk about in my seminars. Just
like my sauces the 825 MAIN. It’s very
simple. But it’s about the quality of
the ingredients. I am very picky about
the ingredients. As you will find out as
I continue…… And as we try the different pasta and sauce for each region in the
northern part of Italy you will begin to understand what I am talking about.
So, let’s get to the fun part. I am going to cover 4 northern regions of Italy. I am picking a pasta that is popular in that area with a sauce or I should say condimento of the area.
Most commonly crimped, square-shaped and stuffed with meat, agnolotti (or ‘priest hats’) is the primary pasta of Piedmont, in the northwestern region of Italy. Located in the lush-green foothills of the Alps and the Apennines, and surrounded by a wooded wilderness, Piemontese cuisine is typically tinged with the musky aromas of its mountainous backdrop. Perfect for poaching, agnolotti can also be added to a broth, but are best pan-fried in a sage and butter sauce and finished off with a dusting of white truffle.
recipe I use Rana brand of Tortelloni.
They are a fresh pasta found in the dairy section of Adams. I used the Cheese Tortelloni and also the Spinach
and Roasted Garlic Tortelloni. I have to
say I was partial to the Cheese one. I put it in a very simple butter/sage
sauce. The recipe follows. But the
highlight of this dish is the shaving of truffles. In the Poughkeepsie Adams
Fairacre Farms I was able to order a fresh black truffle that came from Burgundy,
France. While in Wappingers I had
available the revered White Truffles that were sold in jar. The truffle products are sold in the pasta
section in the Wappinger store. If you
would like to read about some Truffle Facts continue on while the recipe
Truffles are quite unique in feature that
separates them from other common fungi. Truffle has a rounded, below the earth
fruiting body that can be lobed, with shallow to deep furrows and has
yellowish, tan to dark brown skin. The interior is solid, white, marble like in
white species and black in black species with narrow, white veins that tend to
radiate from the base. Mature specimens possess a pungent, rich smell.
Several species of tuber (truffle)
mushrooms found naturally in the dense forests of Northern Hemisphere,
especially Italy, Balkans, and France.
The black perigord (French black) truffle
(Tuber melanosporum) is mainly found the wooden forests of Southern Europe.
They feature mottling pattern with streaks of white veins. They are the most
sought after by the chefs all over the world for its very aromatic flesh.
important black species are black summer truffle (T. aestivum) and Burgundy
truffles (T. uncinatum) are also prized for their culinary values.
The white truffles (T. magnatum) are the
largest of truffles and found in the Northern Italy. White truffles are also
highly accolade by the chefs for their powerful fragrance likened to mould,
garlic, and smell of cheese.
Some other species include those found in
the US such as Oregon black truffle (T. gibbosum), Oregon brown truffle are
also noted for their culinary values. Pecan truffle (T. lyoni) is found in the
southern part of United States near the pecan tree cultivation.
ruffles are grown the wild close to oak,
poplar, hazelnut, elm, pecans and beech trees. Mature truffles develop odors
and emit volatile organic compounds and pheromones that attract wild animals.
Truffle hunters search for them from autumn to winter with the help of trained
dogs in these wooded forests. In the
past, hunters used to rely on pigs to sniff out these prized discoveries.
Problem was, the pigs loved to eat them. In the 70’s they stopped using pigs.
These days, well-trained dogs who don’t care for the taste are used for
Reasons why Italy has best
1. IT’S THE HOME OF THE WORLD’S BEST
dozens of varieties of truffles in the world, but Italy’s white truffle is one
of the most elusive, most delicious and most expensive. It’s found only from
September to December and in just the right conditions, growing on the roots of
trees under layers of damp leaves and dirt.
2. IT’S ALSO THE HOME OF THE WORLD’S MOST
In 2007, two
of the family’s hunters – Luciano and Cristiano Savini – unearthed a
1.28-kilogram (2-pound, 13-ounce) truffle that sold at auction for a whopping
USD 330,000. That price is recognized by Guinness World Records as the most
money ever paid at auction for a white truffle. You can check out a replica of
the truffle at the headquarters. Fun fact: The dog that found the original was
14 years old.
truffles are a rare delicacy: The short season for the mushrooms, the
stratospheric prices ($2,000 a pound is not uncommon) and the intense aromas
and flavors make this mostly something for the world’s super rich. Shaving a
few grams of a white truffle on a dish such as risotto can send the price at a
restaurant soaring into the triple digits.
Selection and storage
truffles are usually sold in the areas from which they are harvested. Choose
firm, fleshly truffles, without bruises.
In the markets one can choose dried
truffles in airtight containers. Other novelty products such as truffle
flavored sugar, salt, truffle honey, truffle oil, etc can also be found in the
supermarkets. Truffles canned in water are also available in some stores.
Eat them as soon as possible. To store,
place them in the fridge fresh up to 1 week. Place cut truffles in an airtight
container and cover them with Madeira or white wine. Canned truffles that are
cut and covered with Madeira or a little oil for a month.
Once at home, use them early. Place them in
cool dry place in a wooden basket away from sunlight and moisture. Keep in the
fridge for a few days, in a paper bag or a dish covered with a clean cloth.
Preparation and serving
Truffle’s rarity in the nature makes them the most expensive items to use liberally in the dishes. Their usefulness counted just as gourmet food and to some extent as appetizer. Do not wash truffles -rub them gently with a soft brush. Cut them in slices, slivers, cubes or shaving.
Agnolotti or Tortelloni del Plin
Package of Rana Tortelloni
1 teaspoon salt, plus more for pasta water 8-10 tablespoons butter 10 sage leaves 1 cup grated Grana Padano 1 fresh white truffle (optional!)
Bring 6 quarts of salted water to a boil. Add
the fresh agnolotti/ tortelloni, stirring gently, and cook them for 3-4 minutes
or until the agnolotti are bobbing on the surface of the water.
Meanwhile, melt the butter in a saucepan over
medium heat. Lay the sage leaves in the pan and heat until the butter is
sizzling gently. Toast the leaves for about 1 minute, then remove them.
Add 1 cup of water to the butter, then swirl the
pan and simmer for about 2 minutes, reducing the liquid by half. Keep the sauce
hot over very low heat.
Drain the agnolotti and add them to the sauce in
the pan. Toss and cook them for about 1 minute over medium heat until the sauce
is bubbling. Remove the pan from the heat, add the grated cheese.
Optional: Shave fresh white truffles over the pasta!
recognized as the ‘bow-tie’, farfalle borrows its name from the Italian word
for ‘butterflies’. Despite its intricate design, this good-looking variety
remains the signature pasta of the northwestern Italian region of Lombardy.
Habitually blended with beetroot, spinach or squid-ink, farfalle is also
available in an array of brilliant color combinations to include the vivid hues
of the Italian flag. Owing to its sauce-holding-abilities, this pasta is best
served with a simple tomato and basil concoction.
Fairacre Farms in Poughkeepsie has Delverde Bow ties but the Adams in
Wappingers has colorful artisanal Farfalle (bowtie) Pasta called Tarall’oro. This dish is highlighted by my own 825 MAIN
Farfalle ala 825 MAIN Marinara
1 jar of 825 MAIN Marinara
1 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves and then very thinly sliced
1 lb. dried farfalle pasta
Grated Parmagiano Reggiano cheese
In a 10-
or 11-inch sauté pan, heat the jar of 825 MAIN Marinara over medium-low heat,
stirring occasionally, until sauce is heated. Remove from the heat.
on the basil and stir to combine thoroughly.
the sauce is warming up, bring a large pot of abundantly salted water to a
vigorous boil and cook the pasta until al dente. Drain it well.
pasta with three-quarters of the sauce and divide among individual serving bowls.
little of the remaining sauce over each serving and sprinkle on the cheese, if
Strozzapreti: (larger version of
(or ‘priest-choker’), is a hand-rolled variety of pasta from the northern
Italian region of Emilia-Romagna. Its dubious name origin is unclear; one
legend suggests that ‘Strozzapreti’ stems from the story of the gluttonous
priests who choked on their pasta as a result of their insatiable appetite,
another claims that housewives ‘choked’ the dough in such a rage, violent
enough to ‘choke a priest’. Irregular in size and shape, strozzapreti is the
larger version of cavatelli (‘little hollows’), and is made of flour, water,
parmigiano-reggiano, and egg whites.
The Cavatelli that I used is in the frozen food section of
Adams those are made with ricotta
cheese, eggs, flour, and salt.
Sauce is Adams marinara, mozzarella cheese, and
Adams Marinara Sauce
1 jar of Adams Marinara Sauce
1 lb. of cavatelli
or if you are lucky to find the larger version called Stozzapreti
of fresh mozzarella cut into chunks
grated Parmagiana Reggiano cheese
In a pasta
pot , heat the jar of Adams Marinara sauce over medium-low heat, stirring
occasionally, until sauce is heated. Remove from the heat.
pot of salted boiling water for spaghetti.
Add cavatelli/strozzapreti and cook according to
Drain pasta saving a ladle of pasta water
In pasta pot add the cavatelli adding a ladle of
Adams Marinara Sauce and a ladle of pasta water.
Mozzarella and grated cheese
Bigoli – The bigoli are a type of
long pasta, which looks like a big spaghetto; they’re from Veneto, but
they’re quite common and popular in the Eastern Lombardia. The name “bigoli”
seems to result from the dialect term “bigàt” which means “worm” with regard to
the shape of the pasta.
Bigoli in salsa
Bigoli in salsa, long pasta cooked in
a tasty fish sauce, is the only inclusion of pasta in the city’s traditional
Bigoli are a
kind of pasta made with semolina flour (semola di grano tenero), salt, and
water. They are like thick spaghetti, and similar to Tuscan pici or bringoli.
The name is also used for a kind of wholewheat spaghetti typical to the town of
Bassano del Grappa in the north of the Veneto and so these are also sometimes
used. Normal spaghetti would works well if it’s all that you can find. In fact,
in many Venetian restaurants today, spaghetti are served as bigoli. Most letter
L ls are not pronounced in Venetian and so you will often see the word written
as it’s said: bigoi.
Salsa is the
general word for sauce, but in this dish it refers to something very specific.
The condiment is made from three ingredients only: white onions, water, and
salted sardines or anchovies. White onions are a speciality of the town of
Chioggia in the south of the Venetian lagoon. Sardines and anchovies are native
to the Venetian lagoon. Although the sardine is the traditional ingredient of
this dish, it really doesn’t matter which one you use. The two are very similar
indeed and in Venetian have almost identical names. Sardine is sarda and
This dish was the most time consuming. It takes an hour for the onions to melt down
before you add the anchovies. I saved
this dish for last because it is very aromatic and has a long lasting taste and
I didn’t want to corrupt the tasting of the other pastas. It’s the most different and not a popular
dish in the US. I was pleasantly surprised
that the customers really enjoyed this dish!
also need to add that cheese if served in Venice is a huge No No! But we are in America and we can do
whatever we like! I used La Bella fresh
spaghetti for this dish since it was the most similar to Bigoli.
onions, finely chopped
2 TBS of
extra virgin olive oil
sardine or anchovy fillets
1 pound of
bigoli or fresh thick spaghetti
Place the onions in a large frying with EV olive oil.
Cook on a low heat seating them until so soft that they are falling apart adding a little water so as not to color the onion. You are almost melting the onions! Takes about an hour.
Finely chop the sardine/anchovy fillets and add the fish to the pan
Stir until the fish has dissolved in the into the onion mixture.
Continue to cook for about five minutes.
Bring a pan with 4 quarts of unsalted water to the boil.
Cook the bigol/ spaghetti according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pasta to the frying pan with the sauce in it.
Mix the pasta into the sauce, adding a little of the cooking water if necessary, and then serve topped with chopped parsley and plenty of ground black pepper.
Thank you for taking the journey through Northern Italy’s pasta and sauces! Buon apetitto!! I cant help but be Italian when I talk and talk and talk…especially with my hands!!
As we were leaving Italy this past spring, after visiting my sister Giovanna, a boutique in the Napoli airport jumped out at me! We got to the airport in plenty of time and as we settled into our gate’s waiting area, I told my husband that I was a going for a walk. I think he was a little worried when he saw that I grabbed my pocket book. I urged him not to worry because I wasn’t buying clothes! I headed towards the most beautifully decorated boutique. Entering the boutique, Dolce e Gabbana spoke to me loud and clear. I patted my side to make sure I had my pocketbook!
Just a mere 15 minutes later I lugged a beautiful shopping bag to where Jim was sitting. As he glared at me, I joyfully exclaimed that I bought pasta!
I had filled my bag full of Pasta Di Martino! Jim looked at me with a puzzled look on his face.
“But Jim! It’s a real special pasta. It’s made in Gragnano on a hilltop between Monti Lattari and the Amalfi Coast not too far from the airport! Gragnano is famous for its air-dried, bronze-extruded pasta across the world. The Gragnano townsfolk call it white gold. Even though Gragnano has been making this pasta for hundreds of years, it was only in the 18th century that Pasta di Gragnano became widely known spreading all over Italy. In the last century Pasta di Gragnano began to travel beyond Italy’s borders to the rest of the world.”
I continued to tell him that there are 4 reasons this pasta is exceptional!
1. The land where the wheat is cultivated. The town of Gragnano is situated where there’s a right mix of wind, sun, and humidity. In the 18th century, the king of Napoli decided that only two places were suitable to cultivate the wheat for the rest of the population: Naples and Gragnano. The pasta also must be made by mixing durum wheat with the calcium-poor water of Monti Lattari.
2. The second reason is the carefully-developed process, which continues to be regulated by a strict standard of production. In 2013, the European Union declared PGI (Protected Geographical Indication): the pasta made under the name “Pasta di Gragnano” must be produced in a legally defined area that still corresponds to the territory indicated by the king of the Napoli about two centuries ago.
3. The dough must be extruded through rough bronze forms and, once it has taken shape, dry at low temperatures in the mountain air. The result of this long and traditional process is one of the finest pastas in the world. This pasta is called Bronze Cut.
4. And the last reason and what attracted me to the pasta in the first place is that Dolce e Gabbana ( An Italian luxury fashion house founded in 1985 in Legnano by Italian designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana) signed the new look of Di Martino Pasta. A special edition celebrating Italian excellence through colors, symbols and monuments identifying the country.
I was feeling all smug and self important explaining all of this to Jim. And then he tells me that this isn’t new to him. Adams Fairacre Farms where he is the grocery manager carries this very pasta. In fact he had spoken to the international buyer for Pasta di Martino at the recent Food show. He actually ordered pasta with the Dolce e Gabbana look to sell at the Wappinger Falls, NY location. I am like, “Say what!!!” “Yes, we sell it at Adams”, Jim answered with his smug, self-important tone.
I couldn’t believe it. Adams Fairacre Farms is selling the Di Martino Pasta with the Dolce e Gabbana look. Wow! Not only is it being sold in Neiman Marcus and Bergdoff Goodmans. It is even featured in Vogue magazine. And now it’s available in our very own Hudson Valley at Adams Fairacre Farms, Wappinger Falls, NY!
When we arrived home from our trip, I marched myself into Adams to see for myself. There it was! Rows and rows of Pasta Di Martino pasta. So far only the mezzo rigatoni were packaged in the Dolce e Gabbana signed wrappers. I noticed they even have the infamous 24 inch spaghetti wrapped in the original blue paper that the Gragnano pasta was wrapped in hundreds of years ago. No other pasta is wrapped in that way.
I am astounded that we have the Crown Jewel of pasta wrapped in Dolce e Gabbana right here in Wappinger Falls and no one even noticed! Right under our very noses!! Like who knew!
Now that I have uncovered this gem in the Hudson Valley, you all better hurry in while supplies last! Because I sure did fill my cart at Adams Fairacre Farms in Wappinger Falls, NY!!
Love this beautiful pasta!! Can I wear ?
Shrimp Marinara using the 24 inch Pasta di Martino Spaghetti
1 jar of 825 MAIN Marinara Sauce (authentic Napolitana marinara sauce to go with Napolitana Di Martino spaghetti)
1 lb of 24 inch Pasta Di Martino Spaghetti ( Each blue paper package holds 2 individually wrapped pounds of 24 inch spaghetti)
2 cloves of garlic cleaned and sliced thin
¼ cup of extra virgin olive oil
¼ cup white wine
Pinch of red pepper
1 lb of cleaned and deveined shrimp
3 sprigs fresh parsley – chopped
1. Pour jar of 825 MAIN Marinara Sauce in a sauce pan. Warm sauce on medium heat.
2. Start a big pot of boiling water.
3. In a saute pan place extra virgin olive oil, sliced garlic, pinch of red pepper, and the shrimp. Cook on medium heat until the shrimp turn from opaque to white. Careful not to overcook. Less is better because you will be finishing cooking the shrimp with the sauce. Beware that overcooking makes shrimp tough.
4. Add the white wine and the chopped fresh parsley
5. Add the cooked shrimp mixture to warm 825 MAIN Marinara sauce.
6. Add broken up pieces of basil.
7. Add spaghetti to big pot of boiling water. No need to break spaghetti. It will fold over as it softens and nudge it down with thongs. Cook it al dente. Strain saving a half cup of pasta water.
8. Put strained spaghetti back in pot with the ½ cup of pasta water and a couple of ladles of the shrimp marinara sauce. Stir over medium heat until all spaghetti is coated.
9. Divide spaghetti amongst the plates and ladle the prepared Shrimp marinara sauce over. Serve with a leaf of basil on the side of plate.
1 jar of 825 MAIN Marinara Sauce
1 ½ lb of 12/16 shrimp ( On the chart it would be either a jumbo shrimp or colossal) 5 shrimp per person
¼ cup of extra virgin olive oil
3 cloves of garlic peeled and sliced
¼ cup of sherry wine
¼ tsp of salt (optional)
Pinch of red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon of chopped parsley
1. Peel and devein the shrimp washing them in cold water. You can leave the tails on for extra flavor when sautéing. Remember how I said that the shrimp peels are very flavorful.
2. Add extra virgin olive oil, garlic, red pepper flakes, thinly sliced garlic and shrimp to a skillet.
3. Over medium heat cooks until the shrimp turn opaque to white. Probably takes about 5 minutes. Immediately turn off heat and deglaze with sherry wine and put in parsley.
4. Add jar of 24-ounce 825 MAIN Marinara Sauce. Heat over medium heat until sauce starts to bubble. It cooks quick. Don’t overcook or the shrimp will become rubbery.
5. Ready to serve. You may serve it over pasta of your choice.
4 slices bread (2 packed cups’ worth)
2 pounds ground beef or you can use a mix of pork, veal. and beef
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
1/4 cup grated Parmagiano Reggiano
1/4 cup golden raisins (optional)
1/4 cup toasted pine nuts (optional)
1 1/2 teaspoons fine sea salt
15 turns white pepper
4 large eggs
1/2 cup dried bread crumbs 825 MAIN Marinara Sauce
1. Heat the oven to 325°F. Put the fresh bread in a bowl, cover it with water, and let it soak for a minute or so. Pour off the water and wring out the bread, then crumble and tear it into tiny pieces.
2. Combine the bread with all the remaining ingredients except the tomato sauce in a medium mixing bowl, adding them in the order they are listed. Add the dried bread crumbs last to adjust for wetness: the mixture should be moist wet, not sloppy wet.
3. Using a small scoop, scoop and level dropping the meatball evenly on a baking sheet. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. The meatballs will be firm but still juicy and gently yielding when they’re cooked through. (At this point, you can cool the meatballs and hold them in the refrigerator for as long as a couple of days or freeze them for the future.
4. Meanwhile, heat the 825 MAIN Marinara Sauce in a sauté pan large enough to accommodate the meatballs comfortably.
5. Place the meatballs into the pan of sauce and nudge the heat up ever so slightly. Simmer the meatballs for half an hour or so (this isn’t one of those cases where longer is better) so they can soak up some sauce. Keep them there until it’s time to eat.
1 ½ pounds of meatloaf mix (veal, pork, and beef chopped meat)
¼ cup of chopped fresh parsley
¼ cup of grated Parmigiana Reggiano cheese
1 clove of garlic grated on the microplane or minced
½ cup of almond meal
Salt and pepper to taste
1 jar of 825 MAIN Marinara Sauce
In a bowl mix all the ingredients. Don’t over mix.
Using a small scoop. Scoop and level and place on a baking sheet fitted with parchment paper.
Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes depending on the size of the meatballs. Small scoop makes about 40 meatballs.
Meanwhile, heat the 825 MAIN Marinara Sauce in a sauté pan large enough to accommodate the meatballs comfortably.
1 can of cannellini beans
½ cup of 825 MAIN Marinara Sauce
2 bay leaves
a clove of garlic (crushed with the palm of your hand)
1 quart of vegetable stock or chicken stock
1 piece of Parmigiana cheese rind
Extra virgin olive oil
Chop the shallots in small chunks, not too fine.
Put in a pot the shallots, garlic, bay leaves, 825 MAIN Marinara Sauce, Parmigiana cheese rind, and beans with the stock.
Bring to a boil and then lower the heat to a simmer. Cook for 20 mins.
Add salt to taste if the stock is unsalted.
Serve with a spiral of olive oil and some chopped parsley.
Shrimp (size at your discretion), peeled (tails left on) and deveined
6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 cup basil leaves (There are numerous varieties of this spicy, aromatic herb, but sweet basil and bush basil are the most common. It is used mostly in dishes that contain tomatoes, and in salads, soups and on pizzas. Freshly chopped basil should be used whenever possible, as dried basil makes a poor substitute)
3 large garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (These devilishly hot flakes are used in traditional dishes like spaghetti aglio, olio e peperoncino and are found on almost every Italian table alongside the salt and pepper.)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano
1/4 cup pignoli or walnuts 825 MAIN Marinara Sauce for dipping
In a food processor or blender, combine the olive oil, basil, garlic, red pepper flakes, salt, Parmigiano-Reggiano and pignoli/walnuts. Process until the mixture is well blended. Reserve two tablespoons of the pesto in a bowl large enough to hold all of the shrimp and set aside. Pour the remaining pesto over the shrimp and let sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes to marinate.
If a grill is available all the better. If not just use a cast iron pan and cook shrimp until firm to the touch but do not overcook or they will be rubbery!
2 fennel bulbs, cored and sliced (Fennel-finocchio) Fennel is used in three ways in Italian cooking. The bulb, known as Florence fennel or finocchio, is used whole, sliced or quartered as a vegetable, and either braised or baked au gratin. It is also chopped raw in salads. Wild fennel stems (finocchiella) and the frondy leaves, which have the slightly bitter tang of aniseed, are used in cooking to flavour sauces, particularly in fish and sometimes pork dishes. They are also chopped and added to mayonnaise, eggs and cold fish dishes. Fennel seeds are a common flavoring in spiced sausages and other cooked meats, Finocchiona salame being the best known of these.)
2 large onions, peeled and sliced
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 jar of 825 MAIN Marinara Sauce
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan
1 pound short pasta
Preheat the oven to 450°F. Combine the fennel, onion, garlic, oil, chili flakes, fennel seeds, salt, and pepper in a roasting dish and roast, tossing once or twice during cooking, for 15 minutes.
In the meantime, bring a pot of salty water to boil and cook the pasta until al dente. Reserve some pasta cooking water.
After 15 minutes of roasting, stir in the 825 MAIN Marinara Sauce, combining well. Roast 5 to 10 minutes more, until the fennel is tender and starting to brown.
Drain the pasta and toss with the roasted vegetables and Parmesan, adding some pasta cooking water if necessary until the sauce is loosened and coats the pasta. Serve immediately.
4 chicken breasts (pounded well – make sure they they evenly pounded)
1/4 cup of milk
pinch of salt
1 cup of flour for dredging
2 cups of Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
Corn oil or soybean oil
Mozzarella Cheese (either fresh or aged mozzarella)
Marinara Sauce (home made or the 825 MAIN Marinara Sauce)
1. Pound chicken breasts well inside a gallon size freezer baggie. Make sure that it evenly pounded. If it’s uneven it will not fry evenly.
2. Dredge pounded chicken in flour.
3. Dip in egg wash (2 eggs beaten with 1/4 of milk)
4. Then place the flour dredged chicken that has been dipped in egg wash into bread crumbs. Flip the chicken while patting it down into the breadcrumbs coating both sides well.
5. In a skillet place 1/2 cup of oil and heat on medium high.
6.Fry the prepared chicken breast in the skillet. One piece of chicken at a time or the oil temperature will drop. If the oil temperature drops the chicken cutlets will absorb all the oil. Fry for about 5 minutes on each side. The chicken will be golden brown in color. Keep an eye on the chicken so it doesn’t burn.
7. Drain on paper towels.
8.Place the chicken cutlets on a cookie sheet and top with ladles of marinara sauce. Amount of marinara sauce varies to your liking. We just put enough to cover the cutlet.
9. Top with mozzarella cheese. We used fresh mozzarella cheese. But you can also use shredded mozzarella cheese or sliced mozzarella from the deli. Same with the mozzarella it is all to your liking. We just put a couple of slices to cover but you can add more if you like.
10. Place cookie sheet with prepared chicken ala parmagiana on second rack in oven and broil just until the mozzarella melts. About 5 to 10 minutes depending on your oven.
2 cups chicken, cooked and diced
2 eggs, beaten
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
1 cup grated Parmagiana cheese, divided
One 15-ounce container ricotta cheese
1/4 cup fresh basil, chiffonade
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon salt, divided
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
2 cups half and half
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
One jar of 825 MAIN Marinara Sauce
12 manicotti, cooked and rinsed in cold water
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
In a medium size bowl combine the ricotta, 1/2 of the cup parmagiana cheese, eggs, and mozzarella. Stir in the basil, garlic, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt, 1/4 teaspoon of the pepper, and chicken until well combined. Set the filling aside.
In a saucepan, melt the butter and whisk in the flour, and the rest of the salt. Cook for a few minutes, stirring constantly just until the mixture starts to brown. Whisk in the half and half, stirring until becomes thick. Remove from heat and stir in the rest of the parmagiana cheese and nutmeg. Pour into large casserole dish, spreading around to completely to coat the bottom.
Place the filling into a large zip lock bag. Clip one corner and fill the manicotti from both sides and place over the white sauce. Repeat with the remaining manicotti and the filling. Pour the 825 MAIN Marinara Sauce over manicotti evenly. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup of mozzarella (or more if you like). Bake for about 25 minutes or until the filling is heated through.