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homemade pasta

Wine & Chestnuts


Wine & Chestnuts

Wine & Chestnuts

We all know the date November 11th as Remembrance Day, but this date is also significant on a winemaker’s calendar as San Martino, the day, it is said, when all must becomes wine.  On San Martino, it is tradition to get a taste of new wine (vino novello) and pair it with roasted chestnuts.

While there’s nothing wrong with cracking the shells on roasted chestnuts and enjoying their nutty sweet flesh as an after-dinner snack with a glass of wine, why not try them as your main course and enjoy a luscious plate of pasta tossed in a chestnut cream sauce.  The addition of some salty pancetta works incredibly well with the slight sweetness and woodiness of the chestnut to create a delectable sauce.  Pick up some fresh tagliatelle from our store to toss with that sauce and you’ve got the perfect celebratory dish for San Martino.

Tagliatelle with Chestnut Cream Sauce

Ingredients (serves 4)

4 nests of tagliatelle pasta (or more depending on the size of your portions)

½ cup cubed pancetta

1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage, plus additional leaves for garnish

½ cup chopped roasted chestnuts (freshly roasted or store bought)

1 cup white wine

1 cup heavy cream

Salt and pepper to taste

Parmigiano shavings


In a large sauté pan, cook the cubed pancetta over medium heat until crispy, remove using a slotted spoon and set aside on a plate lined with paper towel. In the fat released from the pancetta crisp up fresh sage leaves that will be used as garnish (this will only take about a minute).  Remove the crispy sage and set aside.

Add the chestnuts to the pan and sauté for approximately 5 minutes until they have started to crisp up and change color.  Remove the chestnuts then raise the heat to high and deglaze the pan with the white wine.  Continue to cook until the wine has reduced by half then add in the chopped sage and cream lowering the heat back down to medium allowing the sauce to thicken. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Cook and drain the pasta then toss into the cream sauce to coat.  Stir in the pancetta and chestnuts then serve topped with the crispy sage leaves and some Parmigiano shavings.

#torontopasta #bestpastaGTA #yyzpasta 



July 14th - National Macaroni Day

national macaroni day

It is a comfort food classic; consistently on the list of children’s favorite food choices and so beloved that it has mentioned in nursery rhymes, contemporary pop songs, and even had a crayon color named after it.  It’s macaroni and cheese, the pasta dish that is, believe it or not, consumed the most by Canadians.  So, what better way to honor National Macaroni Day on July 14th than by preparing this iconic dish.

The image that typically comes to mind is the small curved tube of pasta known as elbow macaroni, but the word itself which comes from the Italian maccheroni refers to pasta traditionally shaped into straight, tubular, square-ended short pasta.  Maccheroni can be prepared any number of ways, with a hearty meat ragu, as an omelet better known as a frittata (typical in Naples) or layered into a casserole with sauce and cheese known as pasta al forno (baked pasta).

While it has been a traditional artisan pasta in Italy, the British are credited with the creation of mac and cheese as we know it, a baked casserole dish of pasta combined with béchamel sauce into which cheddar cheese has been mixed, then baked until bubbly and golden. The recipe has evolved since its 17th century origins often turning into a five-start dish with the inclusion of gourmet ingredients such as lobster and truffles, or by using other shapes such as our cavatappi (corkscrew pasta) or creste di galli (rooster pasta).

Stop by the store to pick up some cresti di galli and a jar of our homemade béchamel, then just add your favorite cheese(s); bake and voila you’ve got comfort food at its finest.  Happy Macaroni Day!



Plating Up Canadiana with Maple Leaf Pasta


Plating Up Canadiana with Maple Leaf Pasta

The maple leaf has served as a Canadian symbol since the 1700s.  Not only has this foliage served as the centerpiece of the National flag for over fifty years but it was also the emblem of the first St. Jean Baptiste Society in North America in 1834 and it was incorporated into the badge of the 100th Regiment of Royal Canadians in 1860.  The leaf of the mighty maple is included in both the Ontario and Quebec coat of arms and has appeared on the penny since its first minting.

The maple leaf is the most prominent badge of our nation so what better way to celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary than by incorporating it into your celebratory meal.  Cook up a Canada Day pasta dish with our special Canada 150 Pasta.  Festive red and white maple leaf shaped pasta made with all natural ingredients and no preservatives is the perfect way to plate up some Canadiana.   Toss it with your favourite sauce or use it for a spirited pasta salad in honor of this very special occasion.

Be sure to drop by any of our locations and pick up some maple leaf pasta to serve up for your Canada Day festivities.