‘Nduja (pronounced un-DOO-yah) is a typical product from the town of Spilinga, in the province of Vibo Valentia, Calabria. They are proud of their signature export, and hold an ‘nduja festival every August.
The sausage is an interesting an versatile ingredient, as it is spreadable, making it ideal for topping bread or as a base for spicy sauces. It has a consistency similar to pâté, and thanks to its peak in popularity a few years ago, it is now more readily available in food shops outside Italy.
The origins of ‘nduja are a little misty. Some believe that it was invented in the 16th century when the chili pepper was first brought into the region. Others claim that it is more recent, dating back to the 1900s when Calabria was under Napoleonic rule. The name is thought to derive from the French andouillette (a similar French sausage, but made without spices).
In recent years, 'nduja has become more popular all over the world, unleashing a lot of spicy creativity in kitchens and food trucks everywhere. We'll show you a Calabrian pasta recipe that goes back to its humble origins.
The Fileja is a type of handmade pasta typical of the Calabrian province of Vibo Valentia. It's traditionally made using a “donacu”, a stick from the “sparto”, a wild plant that grows throughout the region, is the traditional tool that is used to create this pasta shape.
The ‘Fileja’ takes its name from the fact that the dough is worked into small tubes about ten centimeters long, wrapped around the “donacu” and stretched with a quick movement with the palm of the hand.
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