Introduction to Pasta  


During the Arab domination of Sicily  (827-1060),  Palermo  was the heart of commerce and exchange and one of the most important centers of the known world.
In this period, agriculture was expanded, the Arab system of irrigation and the cultivation of citrus fruits and rice was introduced. The products of
 Palermo ’s manufacturers were present all over Europe : jewelers produced precious and artistic masterpieces, fabulous textiles and dry goods were made, paper factories were raised to replace the expensive parchment.  

This was a golden period in the history of this city: splendid buildings were built, an urban plane was conceived, and businesses and trades boomed. 

The first pasta factory in the world was established in Trabia, a small town outside
 Palermo ; it was selected for its slightly humid climate, for the mild temperature, for the crystalline spring water without calcium or any other impurities and for the quality of the local grain, the durum wheat: these are necessary attributes to make good pasta.
Now in Trabia, pasta is made on a smaller scale, but the system and the art of making pasta from Trabia spread all over
 Italy  and now Italy  is the world’s biggest producer of pasta. 
There are two types of pasta:
  artigianale and industrial. 
Both types of pasta are good, but it pays to spend a little more money for the
  artigianale, because of the extra efforts made to produce better quality pasta.


Please go down this page to continue the 'Introduction to Pasta'. 


Pasta Basics:



The Recipes


Pasta with Tomato Sauce   



Seafood Pasta Recipes    

Linguine with Clams 

Linguine with  Cuttlefish in Black Sauce ( Linguine al Nero di Seppia)

Linguine with Swordfish ( Linguine con Pesce Spada - Pasta cu Pisci Spata  ) 

Pasta con Sarde -Pasta with Wild Fennels and Sardines Pasta chi Sardi) 

Fresh Anchoives-Catania Style   ( Spaghetti chi Masculini a Catanisi  ) 

Margherita Pasta Anchovies-Fennels-Muddica   (Fennels, Anciova e Muddica)  

Pasta alla Palina  ( Pasta alla Paolina -ca' Anciova e Muddica Atturrata  ) 

Pasta Shrimps, Tomatoes & Pistachio

Pasta chi Sardi a Mari   (Pasta with Escapede Sardines) 

Pasta with Anchovies and Muddica 

Pasta Shrimps and Tomatoes Pasta con Gamberi e Pomodori - Cu l'Ammaru

Pasta with Fresh Tuna & Tomato 

Spaghetti with Lobster Sauce 

Spaghetti with Nunnata Sauce(Small Fish – Ciciredddu)

Pasta Puttanesca (Anciova, Olive, Capperi)



Vegetarian Pasta  




Pasta in Bianco  


Pasta Broccoli Rape & Sausages    Rapine e Salsiccia - Sasizza e Vrocculi 

Pasta w/Squash-Sausage-Ricotta  Cucuzza, Sasizza e Ricotta 

Pasta with Butter and Cheese (  Pasta Burro e Formaggio - Pasta Caciu/Burru

Pasta with Anchovies and Muddica 

Shell Pasta with Ricotta  Conchiglie con Ricotta - Pasta ca Ricuotta

Spaghetti Carbonara 

Pasta with Sicilian Violet Cauliflower 


Baked Pasta 



The industrial pasta is made in large quantities by 183 big Italian companies, with a production of over 20 million pounds daily, 45% exported to Germany, France, the U.K. and the U.S.A.
The pasta
  artigianale produced in modest quantity, it is made by craftsmen and is quasi hand made. It is manufactured by micro companies producing less than 5,000 pounds of pasta daily.
The pasta
  artigianale is made with semolina flour produced in Italy , it is kneaded with pure and mineral free water, pressed with bronze machinery, and dried at temperatures below one hundred degrees Fahrenheit for forty-eight hours.
The industrial type is made with durum wheat imported from
 USA  and  Canada  , it is pressed with machines made with Teflon parts and to speed the process, it is dried at a temperature close to two hundred degrees Fahrenheit, for a short time. 

 Sicily  the pasta manufacturers are present in every large city and small town, most of their products are used locally.
Barbagallo and Poiatti in Catania, Gallo in Mazara del Vallo (Trapani), and Tommasello in Casteldaccia (Palermo) export pasta on a limited scale. 


The following are some of the Italian companies producing pasta  artigianale


·   Amato - Salerno 

·   Arte e Pasta - Boscoreale , Napoli 

·   Benagiano - Santeramo, Bari 

·   Pastificio Benedetto Cavalieri -Maglie, Lecce 

·   Cocco, Fara San Martino, Chieti 

·   Di Nola, Gragnano - Napoli 

·   Faella, Gragnano - Napoli 

·   Gerardo di Nola - Castellamare di Stabia, Napoli  

·    Marella/Pozzo Del Re - Gioia Del Colle , Bari

·   Latini - Osimo, Ancona 

·    Maiella, Chieti 

·   Martelli - Lari, Pisa 

·   Pastai Gragnanesi -Gragnano, Napoli 

·   Rustichella d’Abruzzo - Pianelle, Pesaro 

·   Setaro - Torre Annunziata, Napoli 

·   Spinosi - Campofilone, Ascoli Piceno 


This is not a complete list, in fact there are many more artisan pasta producers scattered all over Italy 


Various Pastas