Pasta Fritta served with cured meats and cheese

Devour these fried-off pieces of pizza dough with fresh cheeses and cured meats.

pasta fritta

One of the things I miss most about living in Italy is the long-table dinners we would have with our neighbours in the small village where we lived. While we patiently waited for the pizzas to be cooked in the scorching wood-fired oven, the women would fry off some pizza dough and serve it with the most incredible fresh cheeses and homemade cured meats. It was so irresistible you would always be full by the time the pizzas were ready!

Serves: 20-24

Ingredients

  • 300g flour
  • 2 teaspoons dried yeast
  • pinch salt
  • 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for coating dough and hands
  • 250ml warm water
  • canola oil, for frying

Method

Mix the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Add the olive oil and three-quarters of the water, and mix together. Add enough extra water to make a moist, stiff dough.

On a lightly floured surface, gently knead the dough to form a ball. Lightly oil the ball of dough and place in a bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and leave in a warm place for about 1 hour to rest and double in size.

Once the dough has doubled in size, place on a lightly floured surface. Gently knead into a smooth ball. Roll out the dough into a rectangular shape until it is about 2–3cm thick.

Cut the dough into slices, approximately 4cm wide and 6–8cm long. Place these on lightly floured trays and leave them for about 3–4 hours, covered with a tea towel, to double in size.

Pour canola oil into a frying pan or medium-sized saucepan until it’s one-third full, and set over a high heat. Check that the oil is hot enough by dropping a small piece of dough into it – when it turns golden straight away, it’s ready. Once hot enough, add a few pieces of dough at a time. Fry until golden and turn over. Cook until both sides are golden, about 4–5 minutes. Drain on paper towel and repeat until all the dough is cooked.

Serve with cold meats (pancetta, salami), cheese and antipasti!


Recipe taken from My Italian Kitchen by Laura Cassai

For Laura Cassai, great food is a way of life. Showcasing her roots in traditional Tuscan and Sicilian cooking, My Italian Kitchen celebrates Laura’s love of simple dishes with sophisticated flavours. Alongside Italian classics, you’ll also find Laura’s MasterChef knockouts, including lobster and scallops with herb butter, mushroom panzanella, fennel and orange, and rolled gnocchi with porcini mushrooms, caramelised onions and crispy sage. Welcome to Laura’s kitchen.

You can purchase My Italian Kitchen at cooked.com.

Published by Hardie Grant Books.

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    COMMENTS

    To make a comment, please register or login
    Silverhead
    1st Nov 2017
    11:29am
    I dont think Italians would be using Canola oil. They would be using Olive oil. Anyone in the health industry will tell you Canola is pretty bad for your body, despite the fields looking fantastic when rape seed is in flower. Canola is much cheaper of course, and its in so much of our food, store bought hummus for one.
    Janran
    1st Nov 2017
    12:44pm
    And Canola oil is often genetically modified, just to make it even more suss.
    Janran
    1st Nov 2017
    12:52pm
    Who eats bread as a starter and then has pizza for the main dish? No wonder the author was often too full to eat the pizza!
    Too many carbs for my waistline and besides, I have a wheat allergy. I haven't eaten a slice of pizza for years, despite the cravings!


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