The magic of Pasta alla Norma

Cooking class experience

Imagine yourself in Nèroli’s kitchen, surrounded by the heady scents of tomatoes, fried eggplant and fresh basil. As the Mediterranean sun illuminates the estate, our chef will guide you step by step through the preparation of one of the most iconic dishes of Sicily and our restaurant Dispensa Giarretta: Pasta alla Norma. This experience is not just a cooking class, but an immersion in the culture and traditions of a land rich in history and flavor. Participating in a cooking class at Nèroli to learn how to prepare Pasta alla Norma is a unique opportunity to discover the secrets of Sicilian cuisine and take a little piece of this wonderful land home with you.

Pasta alla Norma is a signature dish of Catania and Sicilian cuisine. The name “Norma” is said to have been given by a Sicilian playwright, Nino Martoglio, who upon tasting the dish called it “a Norma,” comparing it to the opera of the same name by the famous composer Vincenzo Bellini. The original recipe calls for a few simple but high-quality ingredients, such as eggplant, tomatoes, ricotta salata and basil, which together create a unique harmony of flavors and aromas.

At Nèroli it is prepared strictly with the raw materials harvested from our organic garden, and with fresh pasta prepared daily from stone-milled flours from ancient Sicilian grains.

The cooking class starts in the vegetable garden of our Giarreta Estate where fresh and organic ingredients are gathered to be used in the kitchen, tomatoes, eggplant, basil the raw materials protagonists of our recipe of the day. You therefore go to the kitchen to work together with the chef to prepare the dish. The eggplants are sliced and left to rest with a little salt to remove excess water and bitterness. Next, they are fried in olive oil until golden brown and crispy. Meanwhile, tomatoes are peeled and diced, ready to be cooked in a pan with olive oil, garlic and basil. The ricotta salata cheese is finely grated, ready to be added as a finishing touch to the dish.

Once the Pasta alla Norma is ready, it is time to enjoy it.

The cooking class ends with a tasting of the dishes, accompanied by our DeiMonaci wine in our Etna room with a striking view of the Volcano.

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