Sunday, May 19 2024

A rich and tasty first course made with ingredients typical of the land of Campania.

The preparation of “Bucatini alla Caruso” requires peppers, zucchini, San Marzano tomatoes, fresh basil and hot chili peppers.


Finally, fried zucchini cut into rounds and chopped parsley are added to complete the dish.

The idea of putting these fresh and colorful ingredients together in a recipe came from the famous Neapolitan tenor Enrico Caruso, who besides being an extraordinary singer was also a lover of good food.

It is said that during one of his trips back to Naples, where he stayed to rest before resuming his tours abroad, Caruso suggested the recipe to the chefs of the two hotels where he usually stayed, the “Vittoria” in Sorrento and the “Vesuvio” in Naples.

The dish was so successful that even Caruso often tried his hand at preparing it to please his Italian-American friends who requested it.

But the dishes inspired by the tenor do not end there. Caruso was a lover of spaghetti and often delighted in cooking it. “Whenever he entered a restaurant,” is how pianist Rubinstein recounts it, “everyone present would immediately suspend their meal to observe carefully and with curiosity how he would eat spaghetti: taking his fork with his right hand, with his left, even helping himself with a spoon especially for the sauce?

And it is precisely to this passion for spaghetti that is linked an oath made by the tenor that later went down in history.

The story goes that when Caruso returned to Naples, in 1901, to perform Gaetano Donizetti’s L’elisir d’amore at the Teatro San Carlo, the audience listening to him addressed him in an unpleasant manner with whistles and other signs of dislike.

The disappointment was so great that Caruso promised himself never to perform for his city again and to return to Naples only to eat his beloved spaghetti.

The resolution was remembered by going down in history as “The vermicelli oath.” This gave rise to another exquisite dish in honor of the tenor, “I Vermicelli alla Caruso,” made with vermicelli, olive oil, garlic cloves, hot chili peppers and chopped parsley.

But that’s another recipe.

Let’s go back to our own i Bucatini alla Caruso and see how to prepare them.

 

 

 

 

SERVINGS:4

INGREDIENTS:

  • 14 oz of Bucatini pasta
  • 2 cups of cherry tomatoes
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1 yellow pepper
  • 1 zucchini
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 2 fresh chili peppers
  • 2 tbsp of all purpose flour
  • extra virgin olive oil to taste
  • oil for frying
  • oregano to taste
  • basil and parsley to taste
  • salt and pepper to taste

 

 

METHOD

Take a frying pan, pour in a few tablespoons of oil and sauté the garlic, peeled and cut into four pieces.

When the garlic has browned remove it and add the chopped tomatoes, bell pepper strips, oregano, chili and basil.

Add salt and cook on a low flame for about 15 minutes.

At the end of cooking, add a little pepper.

Once the sauce is cooked, cut the zucchini into rounds, flour them and fry them in plenty of hot (seed) oil.

Meanwhile, boil the bucatini, drain them al dente and pour them into the pan with the sauce.

Toss everything together and serve, decorating each plate with some fried zucchini and parsley…enjoy!

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