Pici

Pesto Pici by Liliana and Mia

Pesto is not a traditional condiment used for pici in the home provinces of Siena and Montalcino. Still, Siena is only a two-hour drive from La Spezia, and pici is a convenient and simple recipe for homemade pasta to be dressed with a good pesto.
Hundreds of years of history have passed. The two hundred kilometers of distance between the two cities have consolidated historical differences. But, especially if you live in places as far away as the USA, forget about the remnants of history, and prepare a recipe that, replacing the traditional Genovese trofie with the Tuscan pici, is simple to make, as demonstrated by my two 15-year-old granddaughters, Liliana and Mia.

From Wikipedia the free encyclopedia

Pici (Italian: [ˈpiːtʃi]; locally [ˈpiːʃi]) is thick, hand-rolled pasta, like fat spaghetti. It originates in Siena in Tuscany; in the Montalcino area, they are also referred to as pinci (Italian: [ˈpintʃi]).

How to make Pici

The dough is typically made from flour and water only. The addition of eggs is optional, being determined by family traditions. Alternatively, finely chopped or shredded spinach can be used in place of water.

Liliana and Mia making pici in the USA

The dough is rolled out in a thick flat sheet, then cut into strips.

In some families, the strip of dough is rolled between one palm and the table, while the other hand is wrapped with the rest of the strip.

It can also be formed by rolling the strip between the palms.

Either method forms a thick pasta, slightly thinner than a common pencil.

Unlike spaghetti or macaroni, this pasta is not uniform in size and has variations of thickness along its length.

Cook the Pici in boiling water

Drain the Pici from the pan.

Making Pici is more fun if done in a family and/or friends group

How to eat the Pici

It is eaten with a variety of foods, particularly:

Food categoryItalianEnglish
saucesbriciolebreadcrumbs
aglionespicy garlic tomato sauce
boscaiolaporcini mushrooms
cacio e pepecheese and black pepper
ragùa meat-based sauce
game meatcinghialewild boar
leprehare
anatraduck

Pici with mozzarella and cherry tomatoes in the USA

Pici with mozzarella and cherry tomatoes in the USA – Enrico

A good way of enjoying Pici is to accompany them with mozzarella morsels and cherry tomatoes.

How to make Pici with mozzarella and cherry tomatoes

Make the Pici, and cook them.

When you drain them, put them in a bowl with the cherry tomatoes and the mozzarella morsels, and serve.

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Enrico Massetti was born in Milan, Italy.
Now he lives in Washington, DC, USA.
Still, he regularly visits his hometown
and enjoys going around all the places in his home country
especially those he can reach by public transportation.

Enrico loves writing guide books on travel in Italy
to help his friends that go to Italy to visit
and enjoy his old home country.
He also publishes books on the Argentine tango dance.

You can reach Enrico at enricomassetti@msn.com.