Anolini di Castell'Arquato

Anolini di Castell’Aquato

From the cookbook: 400 Ricette Della Cucina Piacentina

The recipes are in grams, but I have also given amounts in cups. If you have a digital scale, it really works best to follow the recipes in grams, since one cup can be different depending on how you pack the ingredients into the cup. If you don’t have a digital scale however, do not pack ingredients such as bread crumbs or cheese tightly – just loosely. I made half the filling and used 300 grams of flour (about 2 cups) and 3 eggs for the dough.

for the pasta:

500 gr. flour (about 3 1/2 cups)

3 eggs

water, as needed

I make pasta using the food processor. If you add too much flour right away, it’s hard to get it to the right consistency. Start with 300 grams of flour (which I did) and add the three eggs. Whir it until it starts to form a ball and releases from the sides of the bowl. A lot of getting the right consistency depends on the size of the eggs and on the humidity of the day. I did not need to add any water and I didn’t add any further flour, just the 300 grams plus some extra sprinkled on the board. After you take the dough from the food processor, knead a little on the board, and keep it covered for about 1/2 hour, to rest the glutens.

for the filling:

I’ll give you the recipe that’s in the book, but I cut it in half and it made enough to fill about 120 anolini. I had a little dough leftover, but rolled it out and made a couple of lasagna sheets to put in the freezer for the future.  Top quality ingredients are crucial here. Do not use packaged bread crumbs or already grated cheese.

100 grams –about 2 cups of bread crumbs (I used part of a loaf of day-old dense Italian bread, crusts trimmed and whirred in food processor)

300 grams – about 2 1/2 cups of aged grana padano cheese (I used an aged parmigiano reggiano), grated

2 eggs

 a few grindings of fresh nutmeg

about 1/2 cup chicken broth

Beat the eggs into a bowl and add the bread crumbs, cheese, and nutmeg and mix well.

Roll out the pasta dough, either by hand or using a pasta roller, fill with a small amount of filling. Moisten the dough and fold over part of the dough, covering the filling. Cut with the anolini cutter and place on a towel sprinkled with flour.

Serve with homemade broth, made either with chicken, beef or a combination.