Saffron Pasta with Butter and Parmigiano

Pasta comes in more flavors than Baskin-Robbins these days—from artichoke to chocolate. Most of these are gimmicks, lending more color than flavor. But cooks in Sardinia use saffron in a gnocchi-like pasta they call malloreddus ("little calves") that captures the very essence of the spice.


  • 2 cups hard wheat flour
  • Salt
  • Pinch of saffron, toasted
  • Butter
  • Parmigiano


Step 1

Mix flour with a little salt and crumbled saffron into 1 cup warm water. Knead until dough is firm, adding more water if necessary.

Step 2

Divide dough into 10 pieces and roll into long ropes ½" wide. Cut ropes into inch-long pieces. Press each piece against a fork with your thumb. Flick pasta onto a floured surface.

Step 3

Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook until pasta rises to the top. Drain; toss with butter and parmigiano to taste.

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