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Busiate with Genoese pesto


Symbol of the Sicilian culinary tradition, busiate are a type of pasta typical of the province of Trapani, so called due to the hand-made process with the “buso” (knitting iron). Their particular shape is similar to a twisted macaroni, this is to ensure better cooking of the pasta.
Today we offer them to you with Genoese pesto, the best-known sauce in Ligurian cuisine.


  • 400 g durum wheat semolina flour
  • water at room temperature to taste circa 180-200 ml
  • Genoese pesto to taste

It will also serve you

  • extra virgin olive oil to taste
  • sale q.b.
  • durum wheat semolina flour to taste for the pastry board
  • Sift the flour into a bowl, create a well in the center and start pouring in the water little by little. Salt should not be added to the dough but only during cooking.

  • Knead vigorously with your knuckles (“scanando” – Sicilian dialect) for at least 10 minutes until all the water has been absorbed.

  • From the moment the dough has reached the right consistency (not too soft, but dry and not dry), flatten the dough with the palm of your hands giving it an elongated shape. With your hands greased with oil, rub the surface, going over several times, so as not to let it dry.

  • Cut the dough obtained into sticks of approximately 1 cm, and leave to rest in a container covered with a cotton cloth for 30 minutes.

  • Work the pasta sticks by rolling them quickly between the palms of your hands and the pastry board, until they become long pasta vermicelli of approximately 3 mm, called in Sicilian dialect “maccarruni” or macaroni.

  • Then, once worked into vermicelli shapes, cut them to a length of approximately 10 cm. Gently take them one at a time, wrap them around the knitting needle, trying to keep the strand of dough compact between one turn and another.

  • Place the knitting needle on the pastry board, with the thread of dough still well wrapped and, applying light pressure with the palm of your hands, quickly slide the needle back and forth until the dough is well rolled. Very delicately, remove the busiato
    and place it on the floured surface. After a few hours of drying, they are ready to cook.

  • Place a pan full of water on the heat and, when it comes to the boil, salt the water and immerse the busiate. Cook for about 3-4 minutes after boiling. Drain them and place them in a large bowl with the pesto. Mix well and serve.

During processing, always keep the unused part of the dough covered to prevent it from drying in contact with the air. Keep some flour handy, it will be useful during the process.
If you don't have a knitting needle, you can replace it with a wooden skewer. As regards drying, we recommend using a perforated surface to allow air to pass from all sides while keeping the shape of the pasta intact.
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