WHAT IS CALAMARATA?
These thick rings of pasta resemble sliced calamari (squid) or a shorter version of paccheri pasta (though an easier cut to make well due to its’ shorter height). Its’ name means “baby squid”. In keeping with this, calamarata rings are occasionally dyed black with squid ink. The large diameter of the hole means that this pasta doesn’t hold sauce as well as other cuts. But bronze extruded varieties of these doughy “squid rings” still have a nice, broad outer surface for liquids to stick to.
WHERE IS CALAMARATA MADE?
Originally from Naples, it is now a popular cut in general with seafood dishes. While relatively easy to make industrially, calamarata is not that well known.
IS CALAMARATA (AND PASTA IN GENERAL) BAD FOR ME?
Sophia Loren, one of Italy’s most famous celebrity ambassadors, once said “Everything you see, I owe to pasta.” In an age where gluten and carbohydrates are feared, how could pasta be anything but bad? However you might remember when eggs were found to be bad for you? Then they were good for you. Then the egg yolks were bad and the whites were good, then both were good but only together?!! Well Italian scientists, while not being the most impartial of observers, have proven that pasta is good for you. Click here to read more!
WHAT SAUCES GO WELL WITH CALAMARATA?
These pasta rings pair with most seafood dishes. However being about an inch in diameter, uncooked, they don’t fit into your mouth as easily as many other short cuts. Also being much shorter then paccheri, this is not a good cut for stuffing and baking. But for the more adventurous connoisseur, boil, drain, salt and oil well, and then bake (350F / 177C in a pre-heated oven for around 10 minutes) calamarata pasta rings for about 10 minutes, followed by frying and salting again for an “onion ring” snack! If you’d like to see one of our recipes using calamarata check out our marinara sauce recipe!