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Pezzetelli with Vegetarian Ragu and Arugula

For the dough...

I used a 50/50 ratio of semola and Red Spring Wheat flours, and approximately 1/4 cup warm water per 100 grams of flour (for 400 grams, 1 cup of water, give or take). This dough can also be made with 100% semola, or a mix of semola and whole wheat, grano arso, etc. Knead vigorously for ~10 minutes and rest, tightly wrapped, at room temperature for 30 minutes. The dough should be smooth and firm.

Time to shape...

1. Cut off a section of dough and roll quickly (to avoid surface drying) into a thick rope, 1-2 centimeters in diameter.

2. Cut the rope into ~1-1.5 inch pieces.

3. Using your pointer and middle fingers, make two adjacent indentations into each piece of dough, pressing firmly to create the pattern but gently enough that the dough remains intact. Each piece should be of a similar size and thickness to ensure even cooking.

4. Repeat!

For the sauce...

Pezzetelli are traditionally served with a mixed meat ragu. For this vegetarian version, medium dice 1 yellow onion, 1/2 fennel bulb, and any other desired aromatics. Sweat in 1-2 tablespoons butter until translucent. Add 3 minced garlic cloves and cook briefly until fragrant. Follow with 1 tablespoon tomato paste, stirring to coat and caramelize. Deglaze with a dash of white wine and scrape up browned bits from bottom of the pan. Add 2 Beyond Meat sausage links and 1 Beyond Meat ground beef patty, break them up in the pan and cook 3-5 minutes to brown. Deglaze with more wine, followed by ~1-2 cups vegetable stock. Cook until the sauce thickens, adding additional stock as needed/desired. Finish with 2 tablespoons of salted butter.

Finishing touches...

Cook pezzetelli in well-salted water for approximately 3-5 minutes until al dente. Using a slotted spoon, transfer directly to ragu and toss to coat. Finish with a handful of rocket, and toss again off the heat until greens are wilted. Top with Parmesan, serve and enjoy!

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