Corzetti with Parmesan, Pine Nuts and Herbs

Corzetti (in Genoese dialect curzetti) are a kind of fresh pasta typical of the Ligurian cuisine of north-west Italy, and traditional also in the area of Novi Ligure just across the border with Piedmont in the Province of Alessandria. They are similar to another Ligurian pasta called Croxetti.

There are two different kinds of corzetti.
Those from the Val Polcevera, one of the principal valleys of the area of Genoa are made in “figure of eight” shape. Elsewhere curzetti stampae (“pressed” or “stamped” corzetti) are found.
These are small, thin rounds of pasta that are given an embossed decoration using a special wooden hand-tool. The embossing is indeed more than decoration, as it helps the pasta to hold its sauce better. In the historic centre of Genoa are still traditional pasta shops where the corzetti are handmade and where they make these tools to make them with.

makes about 90 corzetti

Ingredients:

for the Dough:

  • 1 cup all purpose flour or Italian 00 flour
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup white wine

for the Sauce:

  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced or grated
  • 1/8 cup pine nuts, plain or toasted*
  • handful of chopped herbs (parsley, basil, etc.)
  • freshly ground black pepper, salt to taste
  • freshly grated parmigiano reggiano cheese

Instructions:

to Make pasta dough:

  • set flour on a workspace and make a well in the center.
  • Place the egg yolks in the well and gently beat with fork.
  • Add white wine to beaten eggs and mix with the fork.
  • Slowly incorporate the flour with the fork until you get a dough ball.
  • Knead and add flour until the dough is not sticky any more.
  • add more flour to make it less sticky
  • Wrap in floured cling film and let rest at room temperature for at least 20 minutes.
  • Cut in half and take each piece and run it through pasta rollers on the widest setting.
  • Flatten your piece of dough and run it through the rollers (use the thickest setting)
  • Flour it, fold it into thirds, and run it through again.
  • Do this three or four times (setting a less thick setting) and run your dough through, and don’t fold the dough this time
  • Keep running it through the rollers until you get to the thinnest settings;
  • Lay  the sheets of pasta on a floured countertop.
  • Cut out discs of pasta with your corzetti base and lay on sheet of parchment paper on a baking sheet.
  • You can take your scraps and run them through the pasta rollers again to get the maximum number of corzetti.
  • Repeat until you have around 90-100 discs of pasta.

Stamp corzetti:

  • Turn corzetti base so design is right side up.
  • Place one pasta disc on the base.
  • Take the corzetti stamp and press down.
  • Remove pasta disc to parchment.
  • If pasta sticks to stamp, lightly flour.
  • Repeat until all discs are stamped.
  • Place corzetti in boiling, salted water and cook two minutes.
  • Lift with a strainer and dress with sauce.

to make the sauce:

  • Heat olive oil in a skillet and saute garlic for one minute.
  • suatee pine nuts and herbs for 5 minutes
  • Add pepper and salt to taste.
  • When corzetti are done cooking, lift them out with a strainer and place right into frying pan
  • gently toss with sauce.
  • Place pasta in a serving bowl and toss with as much freshly grated parmesan cheese as you like.

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