Philadelphia chef Marc Vetri's simple pasta recipes prove he's as good at homespun cooking as he is at the haute kind.
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Marc Vetri and I met in 1999 at his Philadelphia restaurant, Vetri, where I was dining incognito on an F&W Best New Chef recon mission. The food was astounding, as was the recipe we published when he won the award: tortellini in a sauce made with only three ingredients, combined just so—butter, truffle puree and water. Today Marc has written a new cookbook, Rustic Italian Food, and owns more restaurants (Osteria, Amis and the upcoming Alla Spina); the simple pasta recipes here reflect the restaurants' casual style. One is penne with cabbage and potatoes; Marc briefly simmers the penne in the sauce with some of the pasta cooking water to help tease out its starch and enrich the dish. It's a technique beloved by Italian cooks, and among the smart ideas in the following recipes.
Simple Pasta Recipes: Pasta Shapes to Try
Calamari Use these pasta rings in place of macaroni with cheese sauce.
Mafaldine Try these noodles instead of spaghetti with meat ragù.
Millerighe Substitute these tubes for rigatoni with tomato-based sauces.
Photos Courtesy of Pasta di Gragnano.
Video: Pasta Recipes and Tips