The Delicious Testaroli of Lunigiana is a specialty pasta of Northern Tuscany. Someone says that they are the first kind of pasta ever made because is dated back to Ancient Rome. Its production is located in the Lunigiana area, especially in the villages of Pontremoli, Fosdinovo, and Castagnetoli. You can easily find them in all shops and supermarkets of the province of Massa-Carrara and La Spezia, while it’s really difficult to find them in other parts of Tuscany.
This kind of pasta is a typical example of the gastronomy of the poor peasants and shepherds of the area. They became quite popular after the Second World War, and nowadays the Slow Food foundation protects them as a traditional product at risk of extinction
Pontremoli is one of the birthplaces of the Testaroli of Lunigiana.
The original cast iron “Testi”.
How to make Testaroli of Lunigiana
The ingredients to prepare the Testaroli of Lunigiana are really common. You just need wheat flour (in the past they used spelt flour), marine salt, and water. Once you mixed the ingredients, you have to drop some batter in a really big container called “Testo“. The name Testaroli comes from the Testi, these kinds of cast iron baking pans (once also made in terracotta), necessary to create a thin “pancake”.
Of course, Testaroli has nothing to compare with pancakes, but it is just to help you realize how they look like. To prepare the original Testaroli, you need to bake them using a wooden oven.
When they are toasted, you will have a big disk to cut in lozenge shape stripes with a knife. When the salted water in the pan is boiling, immerse the stripes in the water and turn off the fire. Let the pasta cook for three minutes, and then drain the water.
Thanks to the porosity of the batter, Testaroli of Lunigiana absorbs perfectly all kind of sauce, and your palate will be delighted.
How to season the Testaroli of Lunigiana
Testaroli is really good with pesto sauce as Lunigiana tradition says. But you can also use mushrooms sauce, ragout sauce, or just extra virgin olive oil and parmesan cheese.
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