Gentile's Ziti, 500gr.
Like a Wedding Ring.
What links this luxuriant format to Nunzio and Maria, to the feasty days? Where does its name come from, echoing with Mediterranean reflexions? Read it below! And discover this traditional format with a pork sauce, or prepare it with smothered zucchinis and mozzarella di bufala.
What did make Gragnano the World Capital for "maccheroni", when in the XVII century the once-flourishing industry of silk suddenly ceased to exist? Surely its position, right in the middle of the so-called "valley of mills" (30 no longer working water structures); its warm wind - perfect for dessication, the availability of local high-quality durum wheats: after more than 300 years, it seems time stood still for Pastificio Gentile.
Far from the wild massification, from the struggle for the often out-of-control technological expansion strongly conditioning the field of industrial pastas, this small company creates its whole range starting with indigenous "Saragolla" wheats bought only from two selected farms; milled in a plant owned by the Company, at times handcrafted and dried in "Cirillo" method static chambers... Slowly, at low temperatures. The result is a hearty, compact, pasta to bite; whose rough surface seduces sauces and palates - telling, succesfully, History and cultural richness of a naturally vocated area.
"Si ficiru ziti! They got engaged!"
... whispered the gossip through the narrow streets of the village. Sun hit wildly on the crumbled plasters, on the low dry stone walls: inside the farm house, fresh, surrounded by a frenzy of crickets (among the parched wheat spikes) Nunzio and Maria's engagement was being celebrated; as the tolls of noon rained upon her father - his shirt unbuttoned, eyes like fissures. The festive tin of baked ziti is really named after such scenes: the format was traditionally served in the eastern provinces of Sicily during engagement celebrations - so, the pasta reserved to upcoming marriages ended up taking the name of the lovers themselves: in Sicilian, ziti. Gentile proposes them in a short version, smooth and raw, man and woman, past and future; for dishes which will give a chance to celebrate everyday.