Pici: who hasn't eaten them at least once in their gastronomic raids in Siena?
Pici: everyone has eaten them at least once during their culinary forays through Siena. Pici represent the essence of typical Tuscan cuisine. They are a type of handmade pasta made of just water, flour, extra virgin olive oil and a pinch of salt. Their consistency is unmistakable, being particularly full-bodied, and they are perfect for being seasoned with meat sauces, with cheeses (the cacio e pepe, or cheese and pepper type, are famous), or with aglione.
The instructions for making pici are simple, but they require manual dexterity and experience.
- 500 g 0 flour
- 265 ml water
- 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
- a pinch of salt
1 Pour flour on a pastry board, make a well in the flour, and pour the extra virgin olive oil in the center, as well as a pinch of salt, and then start pouring the water, preferably lukewarm. As soon as the water is completely absorbed by the flour, start working the dough energetically for 7-8 minutes, trying not to let it stick to the pastry board. Then roll it out with a rolling pin until it is about 1 cm thick, grease it with some extra virgin olive oil, cover it with plastic wrap, and let it rest for 15-20 minutes.
2 After this, the elasticity of the dough will allow you to create the pici. At this point cut the dough into strips and start rolling the pasta, giving it as regular a cylindrical shape as possible and making a sort of “big spaghetti” that is longer than usual. In order to do this, you cannot use the flour on the pastry board, otherwise it will flatten and you won’t be able to give the pici the right shape. As you finish the strips, add flour to them, using durum wheat semolina.
3 The condiments that are most suitable to this type of pasta are: Aglione, Duck or Chianina Ragu, or simply Breadcrumbs