Pasta Italiana

100 Recipes from Fettuccine to Conchiglie

by Gino D'acampo and Kate Whitaker

Pasta Italiano

Hardcover, 208 pages, Natl Book Network, List Price: $24.95 | purchase


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NPR Summary

More authentic Italian recipes from Gino D'Acampo, whose first cookbook, Fantastico!, won the Gourmand World Cookbook Award for Best Italian Cookbook.

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NPR stories about Pasta Italiana

Critics' Lists: Summer 2012

Plant Eater's Paradise: 2012's Best Summer Cookbooks

A pasta book? I hear you asking. What is this, the '70s? Of all the hundreds of once and future pasta books in print, why single out one? The short answer, I think, is design. With its bold colors and process photos, Pasta Italiana is a joy to look at and use, and it's full of accessible recipes that are nevertheless not overly familiar. It's linguine with crab, fresh chili and lemon zest rather than white clam sauce. It's

Note: Book excerpts are provided by the publisher and may contain language some find offensive.

Recipe: 'Rigatoni con asparagi, piselli e funghi'

Kate Whitaker

For anybody who isn't a big fan of rich tomato sauces, this has to be the perfect pasta recipe if you still want bags of flavor on your plate. This dish is so full of fresh ingredients that even though it's in a creamy sauce it doesn't feel heavy. I must admit that every time I make this for a vegetarian they utterly love me — so it must be good.

Serves 4

14 ounces asparagus

4 tablespoons salted butter

1 1/2 cups frozen peas, defrosted

1 cup dried porcini mushrooms, soaked in warm water

for 15 minutes and drained

2 leeks, washed and cut into 1/4-inch slices

3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon heavy cream

3 tablespoons freshly chopped flat-leaf parsley

2 pinches of smoked paprika

7 cups (18 ounces) rigatoni

2/3 cup freshly grated Pecorino cheese

salt to taste

1. Use a potato peeler to scrape the asparagus stalks, discarding the woody ends. Chop the stalks into 3/4-inch-long pieces. Drop into a medium saucepan of boiling salted water and cook for 2 minutes. Drain and immediately refresh under cold running water to prevent them from discoloring. Set aside.

2. In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the peas, mushrooms, leeks, and asparagus and sauté for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon.

3. Pour in the cream and cook for an additional 1 minute, stirring continuously.

4. Mix in the parsley and paprika, season with salt, and then set aside.

5. Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente. Drain and return to the same pan.

6. Pour in the asparagus sauce and stir everything together for 30 seconds to allow the flavors to combine.

7. Divide among four serving plates, sprinkle with the Pecorino cheese, and serve immediately.

From Pasta Italiana: 100 Recipes from Fettuccine to Conchiglie by Gino D'Acampo. Copyright 2010 by Gino D'Acampo. Excerpted by permission of Kyle Books.

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