Whenever I’m researching pasta and recipes I always come across the seemingly dogmatic advice that is ubiquitous in Italian Cooking:
Never serve this pasta with this….
In the North, it is only done this way….
A southerner would never use those ingredients in this dish…..
and so on, you get the picture.
A lot of those, lets call them “opinions”, are born from practicality and common sense,
e.g. you wouldn’t want to constrain the delicacy of angel’s hair pasta with a heavy sauce like Ragu Bolognese. It will just not eat well.
Others are from geographic limitations, for instance:
While “Parmesans” (the people of parma, not the cheese) favor egg pasta and dairy sauces, due to the plentiful regional farmlands, in places like Calabria, an egg can considered be a luxury, and they tend to make their pasta with just water and flour.
And of course, lest we forget the most predominate deciding factor-
Tradition and plain ol’ Stubbornness!
Now, don’t get me wrong, I mostly follow the rules.
Not because they are the rules, (anyone who knows me, knows if you want me to do something -just make a rule against it)
-but because they make sense to me.
I’m not about to tell hundreds of generations of gastronomes,
responsible for defined living and eating as art,
that they are wrong,
To hell with the rules.
If taking a light, delicate noodle like Tajarin, famous in the Piedmont region, and paring it with a zesty Salse Verde, full of southern ingredients like anchovy, parsley, mint, capers olive oil and lemon, and that is also often used as a grilling sauce in Tuscany, (the perfect grilling sauce if you ask me)
Then I don’t want to be right.
Lumache, alla Bolognese
Cavatelli, with spicy Calabrian salami ragu
Bucatini, with toasted walnut cream sauce