By: Janet Kalandranis
Do you eat homemade pasta? I do. Well, now I do. Now that I have Nella Pasta in my life. It’s a better life because of Nella. It’s like an Italian Grandma’s homemade pasta just with local ingredients. Yes, local MA ingredients. In pasta.
Nella pasta is part Italian, part local and of course all parts delicious. Who knew that homemade raviolis could be made right here out of South Boston using ingredients from local farms and locally sourced whole wheat flour. It’s like a local pasta miracle. I approve.
How did this whole pasta phenomenon begin? Well two lovely women, Leigh and Rachel, worked together in a past life, connected over food of course and fell into pasta making. Doesn’t that sound so simple and perfect? It kind of is and that’s kind of how it should be. Fresh pasta, simple ingredients, local sources and voila – perfection. And these women wanted to bring pasta to a new level, one that incorporates both a health and environmental element by using those locally-sourced ingredients. In my mind that’s a new way of doing pasta perfection.
So let’s just say that Nella Pasta is dominated by a dynamic duo. One that creates the most amazing and tasty ravioli flavors to date. And how do they come up with these flavors? That’s the fun part! Nella starts the process with veggies that grow here in Mass and then coordinates flavors that enhance these local gems. And we aren’t talking about any old flavors – think kale, beets, toasted cashews and currants! As Nella puts it, “We’re basically layering flavors to create a harmony around the star vegetable.” That’s no joke, I eat their raviolis, it’s the truth.
So let’s dig a little deeper into these wonderful local flavors. Anyone up for some Roasted Winter Squash & Sage Ravioli? Made with local butternut squash of course. Talk about South Shore wrapped up into a pretty little ravioli package. The mixture of sweet butternut squash and earthy sage is a combo I could probably eat forever.
Or how about some Smoked Mozzarella, White Bean & Sage Ravioli? White beans in ravioli – only Nella would figure out how to make that work. They are so clever. And my tummy appreciates every bite of that.
And the local flavor invention goes beyond one or two flavors. Leigh’s favorites (although favorites are hard to choose) include Kale & Currant; Roasted Cauliflower, Rosemary & Gruyere and Mushroom Duxelles, while Rachel’s heart belongs to Roasted Red Pepper, Goat Cheese & Chive; Broccoli, Feta & Toasted Cashew and Corn & Caramelized Onion. Thanks to Nella I can bring pasta dinner up a notch.
Perhaps my favorite part of Nella is the fact that these women never stop inventing local. From new flavors to expanding their vegan line, to finding local ingredients to showcase in a pasta casing. These Nella women help keep my tummy full and my heart complete with local happiness.
Nella Pasta can be found in many South Shore farmers’ markets, grocery and specialty stores.
Submitted by Janet Kaladranis.