Mezzi Paccheri Pasta | Eataly Challenge

This is a dish worth making if you are a pasta lover like myself (and likely many of the Eataly book owners). Eataly: Contemporary Italian Cooking has sections for both fresh and dried pasta so you can choose based on what's available to you. It also features recipes with a great mix of ingredients so there are dishes for everyone.

The artichoke in this recipe was my hurdle... I had no idea what to do with them. My experience with artichokes is buying a can of Pastene artichoke hearts and that's about it. Having to discard the chokes, leaves, and tips was a foreign process. I still don't know if I did it right as the artichoke turned out too firm in the final dish.

My favorite part of the Mezzi Paccheri Pasta recipe was, unsurprisingly, the cheese sauce. This delectable sauce is made with whipping cream, fossa cheese, and butter. The cheese was an unusual one that I called our local The Cheese Shop of Salem for. It turns out you can't purchase it many places so they recommended an alternative that was just as delicious when melted down with the other ingredients.

I LOVE this pasta for a cream sauce. The large opening in the noodles gets more soaked into each bite and they had such a great appearance on the plate. We actually ended up picking up a few extra bags of the Schiaffoni because we don't see Garofalo often. After a little extra research I found out they have gluten free options as well.

The recommended wine pairing was Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi, a white-wine from central Italy. Normally I do follow the rules of food and wine pairing but we were just in the mood for a solid pinot noir and Mark West was it. Next time we make this dish I promise to follow the recommendation and see if it's a better fit!

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