Pasta with cavolo nero, ricotta and pancetta

pasta with cavolo nero, ricotta and pancetta

pasta with cavolo nero, ricotta and pancetta

Can you believe that now you can buy cavolo nero (literally: black cabbage) here in the North of England? For those who don’t know what it is: it’s a cabbage with a longish, knobbly, blackish  sort of leaf, very common in Tuscany. I confess I had never cooked with it before but apparently it’s packed full of minerals and vitamins and really good for you. I made this simple pasta dish not so long ago and was really quite pleased with it. Mind you, I made the mistake of not getting rid of the woody stalk which of the cabbage which was rather hard and chewy. Next time I would only use the leaves. I found the recipe on the Giallo zafferano blog.

INGREDIENTS (serves 4)

430 gr cavolo nero (230 gr cleaned)

250 gr. ricotta

200 gr. smoked cubetti pancetta

50 ml. milk

a tbspoon olive oil

salt and pepper

340 gr. pasta (like fusilli)


Shallow fry the pancetta in the oil. Wash and cut the cavolo nero in stripes. When the pancetta is brown and crispy add the cavolo nero. Add 2-3 ladles of warm water and season. Stir and cook gently for approx. 15 minutes (until soft). In a bowl mix the ricotta with the milk until you have a creamy mixture. Add to the cavolo nero and stir. Cook for a few more minutes to warm through.

In the meantime cook the pasta in salted water. When cooked drain and mix it with the cavolo nero and ricotta.

I obviously had it with plenty of grated parmesan on the top!


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