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Bucatini all'amatriciana recipe

The bucatini all'amatriciana, a delicious sauce whose true italian origins are now forgotten. However, the earliest document we can find about this spaghetti sauce was from the excentric french cook Grimod de la Reynière who, later in life decided to document the best recipes he had encountered, during the glorious but troubled times of Napoleon`s reign. He later wrote a cookbook called "Almanach des gourmands" in 1807 and this is indeed where we first hear about this excellent italian pasta recipe, in modern history. This dish's name takes after the region of Amatrice, in central Italy.

The guanciale (guanciale d'Amatrice) is made from pig's cheek, they usually are triangular shapes, which are put in salt for a period of four or five days. Then they are placed near an open fire of oak wood for a partial smoking, laying in spices and chili peppers.

Bucatini All Amatriciana plate


* 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
* 1 lb. guanciale, pancetta or bacon, diced
* 1/2 onion, sliced
* 1 pepperoncini (small hot pepper), cut in two.  Can be replaced by a jalapeno pepper.
* 9-10 italian tomatoes, diced
* 1 pound bucatini pasta, or spaghetti or even rigatoni
* Pecorino romano cheese, or parmesan; grated
* 1 pinch freshly gound black pepper

Cooking instructions:

For four regular pasta portions;

1. Cook the bucatini pasta according to package instructions until 'al dente', reserve.

2. In a large skillet, heat up the oil and cook the meat for 10 minutes until the meat cubes are browned slightly.

3. Reserve meat in a bowl with the cooking fat, leave some fat in the skillet for the next step;

4. Cook the onion under medium-low setting for a few minutes; add in the hot pepper and let the peppers infuse

depending how hot you want your sauce to be; it should be hot, but not exaggerately so.  For very hot let the peppers in the sauce for 10 minutes, take out the peppers when time is up; or simply leave in the sauce.

5. Mix in the tomatoes in the skillet, season and increase heat to medium-high.  Put back the reserved meat in the sauce and simmer for 120 minutes.

6. Pour the pasta in the sauce and toss to coat.

7. Serve immediately. Prepare each plate sprinkling generously with percorino romano cheese.

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