Pasta n'casciata a typical dish of the Messina cuisine, made of macaroni seasoned with ragù, aubergines and caciocavallo, the local version of the classic Sicilian baked pasta. Here's how to prepare it
A baking tray filled with baked macaroni stuffed with fried aubergines, ragù and caciocavallo cheese: this is the classic pasta n'casciata, the favorite dish of the Commissioner Montalbano, so greedy of this recipe, to be able to eat even four portions at a time!
Pasta on TV
In the episode "La Giostra delle Rotte" Luca Zingaretti, in the role of Commissioner Montalbano, is taken up again just as along with his loyal Mimì Augello and Inspector Fazio, he is enjoying a pan of pasta n'casciata in his home in Marinella, overlooking the sea of Punta Secca, in the province of Ragusa.
One layer and fried aubergines
It's about a oven baked pasta sui generis: in the meantime it is made of a single layer, then it is cooked as a normal pasta, in water and salt, and baked in the end, to obtain a crispy crust. And it is seasoned with aubergines, strictly fried. If the day before, better yet.
In Messina it is made with ragù
If in the province of Palermo there is a version of pasta n'casciata topped with a normal tomato sauce, in the province of Messina it is a must the ragù: minced meat browned with a chopped onion mixture and a glass of white wine. And then the cheese to tie it all together. But let's see how to prepare this truly unforgettable dish.
The recipe of pasta n'casciata alla messinese
First wash and slice the aubergines into small cubes. Place them in a colander, sprinkle with coarse salt and leave them for an hour to lose the water. Then rinse them under water and then dab them with a cloth. Fry them in a pan with plenty of extra virgin olive oil, then drain and let them rest on a plate covered with absorbent paper, so that they lose the excess oil. Meanwhile, slice the onion and fry it for a few minutes in a pan with extra virgin olive oil. Then add the minced meat, sprinkle with a glass of wine and cook for about ten minutes. Then add a few tablespoons of tomato sauce to the meat and continue cooking for about an hour. Cook the pasta in a saucepan and drain it al dente. Transfer it to a pan, pour the sauce and mix well. Add the aubergines, the caciocavallo cut into strips, the basil and finally sprinkle the surface of the pasta with the Parmesan. Bake at 180 ° for 15 minutes and then serve your pasta n'casciata with a good glass of Nero d’Avola.