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World's Easiest Pasta

This image courtesy of Lucy Schaeffer

Frascarelli You don't need any special equipment to make this pasta - just your own nimble fingers. Spread flour onto a work surface, sprinkle with a few drops of water, and stir and pinch to form tiny nuggets. The name of this pasta, frascarelli, comes from the Italian for "twigs," frasca, little bundles of dried oregano or rosemary stems traditionally used to sprinkle the drops of water into the flour. The cooked frascarelli were eaten right off the wooden board used to make the pasta, and it's still classically served that way in Italy. This was a "poor" dish, often served simply with just a drizzle of olive oil and bit of grated cheese. That said, these tender, rustic nuggets are absolutely fabulous topped with savory sausage and pecorino cheese.

NotesRegion: le Marche and throughout central and southern Italy with variations found also in the northern Trentino-Alto Adige region

Serves4

Cooking Methodsauteeing

CostModerate

Easy

Total Timeunder 4 hours

Make Ahead RecipeYes

Kid FriendlyYes

One Pot MealYes

OccasionCasual Dinner Party, Family Get-together

Recipe Coursemain course

Dietary Considerationpeanut free, soy free, tree nut free

Five Ingredients or LessYes

Mealdinner

Type of Dishpasta

Ingredients

  • 4 cups (680g ) semolina flour
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 rosemary branch (optional)
  • Salt
  • Olive oil
  • 3 sweet sausages
  • Pecorino cheese

Instructions

  1. Spread the semolina flour onto a large wooden board. In a small bowl, beat the eggs with 1/2 cup (120 ml) water. Drip the egg mixture onto the flour, a little at a time, using a fork or rosemary branch, and stir with your finger tips to form little nuggets. As they form, pick the resulting nuggets out of the flour and into a mesh sifter. Shake off any excess flour and transfer the nuggets onto a cotton dishcloth. Repeat until the egg mixture is used up, adding more flour if needed. Let the nuggets air dry uncovered, for 2 hours.

  2. Bring 1 quart (960 ml) lightly salted water to a boil and add the pasta nuggets. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until tender.

  3. Meanwhile, in a small sauté pan, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium high-heat. Remove the meat from the sausage casings, add it to the pan and cook until it is lightly browned, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon as it cooks.

  4. Once the pasta is tender, spread it out onto a serving platter or wooden board, and top with the sausage and a generous sprinkling of shaved or grated cheese and drizzle of olive oil.

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