The Top One Hundred Pasta Sauces

No, I’m not going to list them, hehe. There’s nothing much to report on the freelance proofreading front, so I thought I’d ramble a bit about one of my favourite recipe books.

‘The Top One Hundred Pasta Sauces’, by Diane Seed, was published in the early 1980s, and is now technically out of print (although second-hand copies are available in relative abundance on Amazon, at least in the UK). As it says on the cover, it contains 100 different examples of lovely things that you can do to and with pasta; the recipes come from all over Italy, so there’s a lot of variety. There are no photographs — the lavish and colourful illustrations were done by one Robert Budwig, and they make this book a joy to read and use.

The recipes themselves are generally pretty easy to make and, apart possibly from pecorino romano cheese, the ingredients are usually fairly easy to find and not too expensive. This was especially good for me, because this is about the only recipe book I used during my whole time at university! Ehehe…

My personal favourite recipes include Tagliolini al Salmone (tagliolini with smoked salmon), a lovely and quick-to-make dish that’s especially good for late spring and summer; Rigatoni alla Norcina (rigatoni with Norcia sauce), a creamy-sauce-and-sausages dish that’s a great winter warmer (being unable to easily obtain genuine Norcia sausages, I use standard British bangers, which work pretty well); and Paglia e Fieno alla Ciociara (paglia e fieno farmhouse style), a creamy pea, ham and mushroom dish that would also work pretty darn well as a filling for vols-au-vents. This is only a small selection, because if I were to enumerate all the recipes that I like, I’d probably run into some awkwardness with copyright laws.

It’s also not strictly necessary to use the specific type of pasta listed in the ingredients for a particular recipe; many’s the time, for example,that I’ve made the Spaghetti alla Carbonara recipe using conchigle (shells) or fusilli (twists) instead. It still tasted just as good!

That’s about all for now. Thanks for reading!


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