This very versatile recipe is built around Calabria’s fiery, spreadable salami called ‘nduja; available from most delis, my favourite version is from Salumi Australia. I’ve made this dish without the chicory (just eggs) and without the eggs (just chicory), but I like it best with both. The name chicory is sometimes used for endive or witlof, but the kind I use here looks like long dandelion leaves, they are related and you could use dandelion or any other bitter greens instead. Strozzapreti literally means ‘strangle (or choke) the priest’. It’s a twisted pasta that has several different names, Barilla calls its casarecce; you can replace it with any short pasta. Don’t be too precise when slicing the green leaves from the thick white chicory stems, use it finely sliced, stems and all, if you prefer (though I like the stems cooked as a separate vegetable). Coriole’s soft sangiovese is a great accompaniment, the perfect foil for the spicy ‘nduja. Scroll down to the Q&A here for all you need to know about cooking pasta perfectly.
Serves 6 as a starter
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Pronounced en-DOO-ya, 'nduja is a spreadable salami from the southern Italian region of Calabria. 'Nduja is made from pork fat, pork meat, Calabrian chilies and salt.
It’s the amount of fat in 'nduja, as well as how finely the meat is minced, that gives it its spreadable consistency. The high percentage of chilli in the paste also helps soften it.
'Nduja is a fermented sausage and so it can be eaten raw, without cooking. It can also be used in cooking to add spice, colour and a rich umami flavour to many dishes.
Italian’s serve 'nduja like any salami. It’s great as part of an antipasto (in a bowl, spread on crackers or bread or with raw vegetables for dipping), tossed through pasta sauces, as a pizza topping, or smeared on toasted bread. It’s a wonderful addition to a grilled cheese sandwich too!
'Nduja is a spicy, meaty, savoury sausage paste. The spice level is quite high, so start with a little and add more to taste.
If serving 'nduja raw, allow it to come to room temperature first so the full flavour can be appreciated.
It's believed ‘nduja was modelled on the French pork sausage andouille, made from pork fat and trimmings, and that the Italian name is a derivation of the French word.