Saffron pasta with ricotta conjures Sardinian fields | Meals and Cooking

2 min read

Every November in Sardinia, purple crocus blossoms blanket the rolling fields. It’s a placing sight towards a lush inexperienced backdrop. Those self same flowers additionally present what locals name “crimson gold,” or saffron.

Saffron is among the defining flavors of the Italian island. First cultivated by the Phoenicians, saffron now colours and perfumes quite a few dishes, from little gnocchi referred to as malloreddus to gelato and zeppole, a fried dough eaten at Carnival.

Naturally, this being Italy, it additionally flavors pasta — at occasions each the noodles and sauce — and we had been significantly taken with a vegetarian one on the Sante Rughe restaurant in Gavoi. A number of threads of saffron had been simmered in milk, which then was blended with salty ricotta for a wealthy, no-cook sauce to coat ear-shaped orecchiette.

The model in our ebook “COOKish,” which limits recipes to only six components with out sacrificing taste, comes collectively rapidly. Merely microwave the milk with the saffron, combine within the ricotta with a little bit of salt and pepper, and add cooked pasta. We add half a cup of mint for a layer of natural freshness.

Cup-like orecchiette pasta is ideal for catching the calmly creamy sauce, although penne works properly, too. However remember to use complete milk and whole-milk ricotta; lower-fat milk and cheese go away the dish tasting too lean.

Orecchiette with Saffron, Ricotta and Mint

Begin to end: 20 minutes

  • ½ cup complete milk
  • ½ teaspoon saffron threads
  • 1 cup whole-milk ricotta cheese
  • Kosher salt and floor black pepper
  • 1 pound orecchiette OR penne pasta
  • ½ cup chopped contemporary mint
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1 ounce pecorino Romano cheese, finely grated (½ cup), plus extra to serve

In a liquid measuring cup, microwave the milk and saffron till heat, about 1 minute; stir, then cool. In a big bowl, whisk the ricotta, saffron milk and ½ teaspoon every salt and pepper. Cook dinner the pasta in a big pot of salted boiling water till al dente, then drain and reserve among the cooking water. Add the pasta to the ricotta combination and toss. Stir within the mint and cheese, then season with salt and pepper. Serve sprinkled with further cheese.

For extra recipes, go to Christopher Kimball’s Milk Road at

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