The Sicilian Secret: Busiate Pasta
You don’t need to be a food enthusiast to know that pasta has long been a staple of the Italian diet but have you ever wondered why there are so many shapes, sizes & names for the durum wheat noodle? The answer lies in the climate and terrain of the region; each region specifically designed their pasta to hold their sauce in the best way. The spaghettis, linguines and pennes have long been favorites in any international kitchen while the busiate pasta from Trapani, Sicily has remained relatively unknown, probably only discovered by the adventurous tourist wanting to try the local dishes.
Busiate is spiral shaped dough which is hollow in the center and resembles the old fashioned telephone cord. It takes its name from ‘busa’ a type of reed around which the dough is wound to give its curly shape, a design that allows it to retain the juice from the tomato or seafood sauce and lightly coat each strand so that you can experience the ingredients in every bite.
While in the US we usually opt for quick convenience meals due to the modern fast paced lifestyle, in Sicily many women still make their own pasta and produce the beautiful, springy macaroni pieces at quite a speed. With the addition of a simple sauce such as ‘trapanese’ which contains tomatoes, almonds and garlic and some extra virgin olive oil and pecorino cheese on top, in no time you have what appears to be an effortless dish to the Sicilian housewife.
Papa Vince has brought this family favorite directly from Sicily to the American kitchen table for the discerning cooks who want to enjoy a healthy artisanal pasta and its accompanying health benefits. Our original yellow busiate is made simply with stoneground semolina and PH balanced spring water using a technique that retains the natural bran and wheatgerm of the wheat.
It is shaped using bronze wires and slow dried for up to 72 hours at lower temperatures producing a quality of pasta that you can enjoy at ‘al dente’ perfection in only 10 minutes, you know, that slightly chewy texture that is tender through & through and even better warmed up as left overs! So you don’t need to worry about mushy pasta or even that feeling of bloating, the nutrients from the semolina in our busiate pasta aid digestion, boost the immune system and the high level of protein nullifies the sugar rush that accompanies the commercial boxed pasta that has been stripped of its nutrients.
If you love this pasta then why not try our dark colored tumminia busiate pasta? Similar to quinoa and farro grains that are reappearing on the health conscious menu, tumminia is an ancient grain that has existed in Sicily since the Greek Colonization in the 7th century BC and was produced until the 1950s when it was abandoned due to its low yield, but has recently regained its popularity due to its health benefits.
This grain must be grown organically, it does not tolerate pesticides, insecticides or herbicides and can be cultivated during droughts. Producers in Sicily have brought this ancient grain to life again with a synthesis of traditional techniques and innovative instruments, resulting in a nutritional food that is low in gluten, high in fiber and protein with a natural, sweet nutty flavor.
Interested in how busiate pasta is made? Watch Vitina make it with Cousin Kati & Cousin Vito in the video.