A large bowl of tagliatelle, spaghetti, macaroni, or even fettucini comes to mind when we think of pasta. However, we bet no one ever taught you how to make Gigli pasta. We fell in love with it the moment we heard about it.
One of the most attractive pasta shapes we have seen will make your dish appealing and a surefire hit at the upcoming dinner gathering.
The dough itself isn’t extraordinary, but the shape is what makes it so incredibly distinctive. This pasta has ruffled edges and is fashioned like a bellflower, flute, or cone. In addition to being visually pleasing, this pasta shape functions far better than other spaghetti shapes at holding a lot of sauce.
Therefore, we will examine what it is, and talk about a little of its history. Also, analyze how it is manufactured, and even discuss how it might be utilized in today’s article.
We’ve even provided a pasta recipe and directions so you can prepare it yourself at home.
One of the most distinctive forms of pasta you can find is Gigli pasta, often known as campanelle pasta. Although the pasta is ordinary, its unique shape makes it stand out.
It is quite irregularly shaped, resembling a flute or cone with ruffled edges. The pasta and sauce can blend together perfectly because of the fluted shape’s increased sauce entry space.
This will guarantee a superb balance of pasta to the sauce and prevent the pasta and sauce from separating from one another.
There is nothing more disgusting than tasteless spaghetti with scant sauce.
If you pay close attention, you’ll notice that Gigli pasta resembles a tiny bellflower or lily, which is where the name originates. The pasta is from Tuscany, where Florence’s national flower is the lily.
It has been a component of the city’s coat of arms and the country’s flag for more than a thousand years.
The pasta is frequently referred to as “gigli toscani” in Italian recipes, so keep an eye out for that branding as well. The word “campanelle,” which refers to a bellflower or other bell-shaped flower, is Italian for “small bell.”
Naturally, freshly prepared pasta and dried, mass-produced pasta differ from one another. Typically, eggs, semolina flour, and salt are used to make fresh pasta.
However, eggs are nearly never added to dried pasta to help increase its shelf life.
Pasta production began in Italy many years ago, and it was traditionally created by hand and cooked fresh. However, around the start of the 20th century, the artificial drying process allowed manufacturers to produce pasta in large quantities that also kept longer.
It was initially solely sold in Italy, but gradually spread over the rest of the world.
This pasta is a type of dried, bulk pasta that is often created by combining water and farina or semolina flour from durum wheat. Large machinery is used to make the dough.
To enable shaping, it is first combined, then kneaded, and finally rolled into thin sheets. The dried, packaged, and distributed shaped Gigli pasta is then shipped to various distributors and retailers.
This pasta is made with the use of a specially designed, long nozzle. The pasta is cut to the proper length and then extruded via the nozzle by rotating blades.
Following the making and shaping process, the water content of pasta is typically 31%. The pasta’s moisture content must be reduced to 12%.
This will aid in extending the shelf life and halt the growth of any germs and mold bacteria that need moisture to survive.
Natural drying will take a very long time and may not be able to reduce the moisture content all that much.
The pre-drying technique is how producers dry pasta by first subjecting it to hot air. This causes the pasta to dehydrate until around one-third of its moisture has been gone. The pasta is now tender on the inside but dry on the exterior.
In order to stabilize the pasta during the second drying step, the temperature is swiftly lowered. Stabilizing aids in the equal distribution of any residual moisture without causing the pasta to break.
Different drying techniques are used for various types of pasta. Short pasta, such as Long pasta, is discharged onto a conveyor shaker to aid keep the pasta from sticking while it dries.
Spaghetti and other long pasta are dried in various ways.
For long-term storage, we wouldn’t advise drying it at home because it is very challenging and time-consuming. You probably won’t get the proper moisture content without specialized equipment anyway.
In terms of producing pasta, practically anything is feasible. Although creating gigli pasta at home is possible, it may require a little bit of patience and a lot more practice than making linguini.
Even the most skilled cook finds it challenging, but despite this, it is a lot of fun to create, and you can apply a few tips to speed up the procedure.
Make high-quality pasta dough from scratch to begin producing this pasta at home. If you don’t already have an old Italian recipe hanging around your kitchen, we have one for you below.
The procedure will go much more smoothly if you have a pasta maker. Using a rolling pin or your machine, spread the pasta into thin sheets. Using a ruffled rectangular cutter, cut the thin sheets into rectangular forms.
The rectangle should now be shaped into a bell or flute. To help create the curled appearance, lightly press the edges out. To guarantee that it maintains its shape while cooking, lightly press the fluted end.
- Use a fork to stir together the flour, salt, and egg until the dough comes together. You can add a drop of water to the dough if it doesn’t come together, but just until it does. Don’t add too much water.
- On a lightly dusted surface, knead your dough for 7-8 minutes, or until it is smooth.
- For 30 minutes, wrap the dough in plastic wrap or Saran and chill it to allow the formed gluten strands to relax.
- Just enough dough must be rolled out with a rolling pin to pass through the widest setting of your pasta maker. Your pasta dough should be rolled out to the required thickness and shape.
Cooking Gigli Pasta
No matter if the pasta is newly cooked or purchased from a nearby store, cooking gigli pasta is quite simple.
Bring a big saucepan of heated water to a boil on the burner. Boiling water should also have a small amount of olive oil and a pinch of salt added.
While the oil helps keep the pasta from sticking together while it cooks, salt helps season the pasta.
Use your own discretion here, but bear in mind that while the oil is useful, it could also prevent the sauce from sticking to the pasta, especially if you want to add the sauce right away after the pasta has cooked.
It only needs to be cooked for 3–4 minutes or until it is soft and al dente when using homemade dough. Because it cooks more quickly and is much softer than store-bought pasta, be careful not to overcook this pasta.
You can wait until the pasta is cooked and al dente for store-bought spaghetti for about 7 to 10 minutes.
Due to the fact that this pasta has been dried to completely eliminate all moisture. It will take longer to rehydrate. It will also require slightly more time to cook than freshly prepared pasta.
Pasta Gigli in Bolognese sauce
Both novices and professionals will enjoy this recipe. With a traditional bolognese sauce, you truly can’t go wrong.
Pasta made with chickpeas, spinach, and za’atar with a Mediterranean flair
Our favorite pasta now has an entirely new flavor profile thanks to the za’atar.
Pasta with Swiss chard with pesto and goat cheese.
You won’t have to worry about cooking that side salad because this recipe has both greens and carbohydrates.
Pasta Salad, a simple cold side dish
For those sweltering summer days when you’re just in the mood for something cool, pasta salad is the ideal dinner.
Tordellata with Ragu, Swiss Chard, and Ricotta is a traditional Italian dish.
This tordellata dish is just extraordinary. The ricotta gives it a unique flavor that sets it apart from the goat cheese dish above.
Charred Asparagus, Creamy Tahini Sauce, and Za’atar, a vegan option
If you’re a vegan try this dish. In my opinion, tahini and za’atar are a great combination.
Although there are undoubtedly alternative methods outside the stovetop for cooking pasta. We must admit that the stovetop produces the best results.
This pasta is an option for adding to casseroles and baking them. Because of their small size, the pieces will cook through extremely quickly.
Simply blanch the pasta for approximately a minute before adding it to the dish if it won’t be baking for very long.
For those of you who like cooking in the microwave, Gigli spaghetti can also be prepared in one.
Put 1 cup of Gigli pasta in a sizable bowl that can go in the microwave. Don’t add too much water because it can boil over, just enough to thoroughly cover the pasta in the bowl.
When cooking pasta in the microwave, season it with a little salt and cook it on high for 4–5 minutes. Microwave the spaghetti for a further 30 seconds if necessary to make it more tender. Add your preferred sauce after putting the extra water through a sieve to drain.
Unfortunately, not all supermarkets will have it, and you might even find that a small town doesn’t because it is such a rare type of pasta.
Yes, you can make your own, but even then, even if you aren’t using an electric pasta machine, you still need certain specialized tools.
However, there are many other options you can employ, so do not be alarmed. These options obviously have more to do with shape than flavor, as the majority of pasta varieties employ the same recipe and simply vary in shape.
If you must choose an alternative, go for something with a unique shape that can still hold the sauce nicely, like this pasta. Therefore, anything with a hole or flute shape will work well.
Farfalle (bow-shaped pasta), conchiglie (seashell-shaped pasta), and radiator are a few of our preferred substitutes (car radiator-shaped pasta with a rich WW2 history).
Rotelle and cavatelli, pasta shells that resemble hot dog buns, are other fantastic choices (that look like wheels with spokes).
You can be creative and even innovative with all these varied shapes.
Vegetarians and vegans can participate in this round, which is fantastic news! Due to the lack of eggs in the pasta recipe, most dried pasta purchased at the supermarket is suitable for vegans and vegetarians.
As we’ve already established, eggs give pasta additional moisture, and moisture encourages the growth of bacteria, shortening the pasta’s shelf life significantly!
To be absolutely certain, make sure to inspect the packaging before purchasing. Because it may include eggs, fresh pasta may not be suitable for vegetarians or vegans, although there are some fresh vegan pasta options available.
So now that you are informed about gigli pasta’s appearance, preparation, and etymology, you can enjoy it. But what can you truly make with it and for what purposes?
Here are a few recipes that are quite simple to create and are sure to be a hit with everyone.
Use some pasta in place of the macaroni pasta in your favorite mac and cheese recipe.
They are a great ingredient to include in casseroles to add bulk. Pasta is a very satisfying food that also gives the dish fiber. This in particular is excellent in casseroles because it cooks more quickly due to its tendency to be a little thinner than other pasta.
The pasta pairs well with any creamy spaghetti sauce or recently cooked tomato sauce. The flute helps the pasta hold more sauce, especially runnier pasta sauces the ones with fewer chunks and textures.
Pasta need not always be heated to order. In the summer, a pasta salad is always a hit and brings a cool aspect to the meal. Any of your favorite salad recipes would taste great with this pasta. It will give the salad a unique texture and increase its filling capacity; you could even eat it by yourself for dinner.
Gigli pasta is distinguished by its exquisitely ruffled shape. Yes, it looks fantastic, but it also serves a useful purpose. Due to its curves and ruffles, the distinctive shape holds more sauce than other pasta varieties.
Gigli is made with semolina flour, eggs, and salt, the same as all other fresh pasta. Eggs are not used in dried pasta that is sold in stores since they shorten its shelf life. Instead, water and durum wheat semolina flour (perhaps even farina flour) are used to make it. Buy fresh rather than dry if you have the choice. You’ll taste the difference, I assure you.
The National Pasta Association lists the nutritional benefits, flavor, practicality, and affordability of pasta as some of the factors contributing to its rising popularity.
A healthy diet should include pasta on a regular basis. It’s a great supply of complex carbs, the body’s main source of energy, and it may even prolong your feeling of satiety.
Pasta does not make you fat. In reality, research demonstrates that eating pasta in moderation won’t cause you to gain weight.
They are almost 350 shapes in which pasta is available. There are thought to be almost four times as many names as shapes. Farfalle, fettuccini, and spaghetti are only the beginning.
Spaghetti is the most common type of pasta, followed by elbows, rotelle, penne, and lasagna.