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Aldo's Pasta: egg pasta born from disobedience – Food.it

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"Get away and don't bother me while I work, and remember this is women's work."
So grandma Teresa scolded Luigi while he hopped around her on Sunday morning, while she was preparing egg pasta. Yes, because in the Marche making pasta has always been a women's job only. The secrets were kept by the "writethe women of the house, the skilled workers who fed everyone with water, flour and the few things from the garden. And grandmother Teresa was the best "vergara" in the townthere is no doubt about this. Only she knew the secrets of a perfect pastry.
“Once upon a time real pasta, prepared with lots of eggs, was a dish reserved for special occasions, because the farmers were too poor to eat it every day – he explains Louis Donnari, owner of the artisan pasta factory Aldo's Pasta -. Thus the vergara was prepared with the women of the village only on occasions when the men found themselves working all together, such as in moments of threshing, harvesting hay or plowing the fields”.
Luigi was fascinated by the scent of fresh eggs and flour, by the movements of his grandmother who kneaded and rolled out the dough. “We were very poor and durum wheat was a rarity: so our grandmother sold chickens and oil to go to the shop to buy semolina, to mix with the flour to make the pasta more full-bodied and flavourful. “One day” – she told me – “there will be no more all this poverty and you will be able to buy durum wheat every day to make good pasta”. And so it was.
"I've always loved making pasta, but I never found the courage to start my own business, because in my country no man had ever made pasta – continues Luigi -. Then my wife Maria arrived and with love she encouraged me to follow my passion and to put to good use all the secrets learned from my grandmother by watching her work”.
Thanks to Maria's support, Luigi takes courage and thus the first pasta of the Marche with a name is born "as a maleAldo's Pasta, from the first letters of the surnames of Maria and Luigi, Alzapiedi and Donnari, AL+DO. Its pasta, however, is still today "a thing for women": the company, all in "pink", won the "Woman-Enterprise Award" in 2011 assigned by the Chamber of Commerce of Macerata.
The paste
A different mix of semolina is used for each pasta shape, the dough is mixed with care and the dough is worked so as to remain soft. The sheet is cut and hung on special slats and frames placed in the dryer to allow slow and natural drying. A ritual, rather than a manufacturing process, which allows for a small daily production.
Aldo's Pasta cooks in four minutes and when you put it in the pan it doesn't fall apart. On the palate it is rough, it absorbs and holds the sauce like few other pastas.
Curiosity
One of the greatest admirers of Aldo's Pasta is Heston Blumenthal, the self-taught "super cook" owner of the English restaurant "The Fat Duck" (3 Michelin stars), recognized by all as one of the best in the world. Blumenthal believes that mealtime is a complete sensory experience, the only one capable of involving all of our senses. He is a supporter of ultra-slow cooking and sous vide and has experimented with the use of sound during dinner.
One of his most famous creations is called “Sound of the Sea“: the chef places an i-pod nano in a shell so that diners can hear the sound of the waves while tasting the fish. The dish consists of mackerel balls, halibut with seaweed and sea shells and also includes a "sand" obtained from tapioca, miso infused in oil and small fried anchovies. All served in a crystal box as transparent as water. But even if Blumenthal is called "the Alchemist" and is recognized as one of the most important masters of molecular cuisine, when it comes to pasta he has no doubts and chooses the purest Marche tradition.
Di Annalisa Cavalieri
12 May 2013

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