Spaghettata Picante

It isn’t a surprise that when we were in Italy we tried to bring back some food. Some things were difficult like olive oil and balsamic vinegar (and unfortunately wine), but we did run into a plethora of spices when we were in the Cinque Terre. They were so simple – a bag of a unique blend of spices that you cook with olive oil to infuse it, then toss with pasta and top with cheese. It seemed so simple, yet like everything we experienced in Italy, the simple foods were in so many ways the most amazing.

So, we tried this at home with some bucatini and it was amazing. Perfect for summer, too, since it wasn’t too heavy. I know it might seem silly to blog this since the ingredients aren’t readily available here, but I will do two things to help. 1) I will translate the ingredients so you can make a similar spice mixture and 2) I will include the Web site of the company who makes the spies in the Liguri region (and I have an email into them to ask about shipping to the US).

Bon Appetito!

Serves 2

1/2 pound bucatini or pasta of your choice
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons spice mixture
Handful of cheese (parmigiano or whatever you like)

Boil water and cook pasta according to directions. Heat olive oil in skillet until it is hot but not smoking. Add the spices and cook on low-medium heat for a few minutes, until it is infused. Drain pasta and add to spice mixture. Toss to coat and top with cheese.

Antichi Sapori Liguri (spice mixture is called Spaghettata Picante)

Spice mixture contains a variation of: chili pepper, powdered garlic, dried parsley, salt, chervil


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7 Responses to “Spaghettata Picante”

  1. Jim Mahar Says:

    We were in the Cinque Terre recently also. We bought the same spices that you did.

    I sent an email to Antichi Sapori Liguri asking if there is some way we could buy their spices either directly or through a distributor. I sent this both in english and Italian, but no response. Its been two week, and no response. Did you have any luck communicating with them?

    The Italian pizza we had in Italy has a unique flavor and texture that is rare in the US. We are using the spice on pizza to try to duplicae what they do.

    We found that a special flour (00 ground with high gluten content) that is called “pizza dough”. We are using that.

    The quest continues.

    • foodforthoughtblog Says:

      Hi Jim,

      I sent them an email and did get a response, but unfortunately it was that they do not ship to the US. I would have paid double to get it here, for sure! The only thing I have thought of doing is taking the ingredients from the back of the label and trying to mix my own! If I do it and it seems to be a good fix, I will give you the spice mix proportions!

      I love the idea of using it on pizza! We have only used it on pasta so I will have to try that!

  2. Jim Mahar Says:

    I am glad you received a response from them. Too bad they won’t see a business opportunity when it presents itself. How hard can it be to increase prices and put spice envelopes in the mail?

    There is a technique to identify the quantities of each ingredient, or at least an approximation. It involves a microscope and a lot of time. I may give it a shot.

    If you make any progress, keep me in the loop.


    • foodforthoughtblog Says:

      I know, I was super bummed! I have no clue how to determine the proportions other than they have to list them in order of how much is included – so theoretically the first ingredient has the most included, so I am hoping I can maybe figure it out from there. If I do, I will definitely let you know!!

  3. Chrissie thompson Says:

    I too loved the spices. We brought a bag back from Lake Garda. Oh how I wish I’d bought a crate full.
    Have you ever managed to work out the spice content? I would love to know. Thank you

    • foodforthoughtblog Says:

      Chrissie – I haven’t yet but the label has the ingredients listed just not the measurements. So, I am going to try to figure it out! I will definitely post if I nail it so you can make too!

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