For many years I have been trying to get to this well established community shop and for one reason or another it just has not happened. It has happened by chance now in a very unusual way. OH is a fan of Provolone and has been unable to get a decent version anywhere. He was speaking to one of his female colleagues at work (who happens to be Italian) and she was amazed he had not been to the Pasta shop. He went during the week on his way home from work (whilst I was on my sick bed) and came back with all sorts of goodies.
Today is the first day I have been out all week although I am still absolutely full of cold and after our breakfast at "Ferraris" which again was very good (On Mayors Walk near the Record and Veg shop). It seems to be becoming a regular thing and a regular routine with us on a Saturday morning. They also do bulk orders or deliveries to local businesses and are a great couple Laura and Johnny and despite being new to our neck of the woods in Peterborough are certainly starting to grow the business and lots of regulars and newbies are taking advantage of their hospitality. They are not big but they are certainly part of the community.
Anyway back to the Pasta Shop. This is on Queens Walk just off London Road in Peterborough. It is an institution and part of Little Italy in Peterborough and for a foodie (like myself it has absolutely no end of stuff). What struck me was that the owners it is run by a family, mother and father and their daughter are so friendly and so willing to share their knowledge of the food they sell and about which they are so passionate and so welcoming. I have only visited the once but I shall be going back many more times. They are so friendly and welcoming. Loads of different pastas, the like of some which I have not seen before, Arborio rice for risotto, the sizes of the jars usually small, ,medium and large depending on the size of family you are catering for. All the Italian drinks like Grappa, Marsala, Lemoncello, etc. etc. Proper fresh Italian tomatoes, the tins of specialist tomatoes that add a bit more piquancy. The bottles of passata, tinned cherry tomatoes, capers, Olive oils both light and virgin, balsamic, anchovies, nougat, different sweeties, different cakes. At the moment if you spend £25 you get a free cake (Pannetone) this time round I have a chestnut one (the time when OH went he came back with a pistachio filled one.
The delicatessen counter stuffed to the gunnels with proper salamis, different variations, porchetta, which I absolutely adore, Braesola etc. etc. Italian sausages with fennel seed, and with pepper. We came back with porchetta, Milano salami, Braesola, Napoli salami, and an Italian version of Brie which looks very interesting. Sweet crispy pastries filled with different flavourings (these are longer keeping pastries) but apparently they also have fresh ones on a Friday so I may send OH off for some of those next Friday.
The owner also gives you recipe advice and gives an indication of what to do with some of the goodies once you have bought them. OH came back with the Italian sausage the other day and they are a thick meaty sausage with the addition of fennel (very different to our sausages) but she told him to chop up a couple of potatoes an onion, some red peppers, some garlic cloves and add the sausage and roast (after adding a little oil) I added some fresh Rosemary as well and it made a meal in itself we had a bowlful each for our supper last night and it was very filling and tasty. We shall be having that again. I did not have the red pepper last night but even so it was still very tasty.
Whilst in there we turned round and ran head on into my step-son and his wife. They did not know we would be there and they did not know we would be there. What are the chances of that happening! His first visit was the other day with his Dad and he was particularly taken with the Porchetta although not a fan of the Piquante Provolone which we are. I love Porchetta in any event and even have a recipe to do my own in the longer term if he is keen on it, it may be that I will have a go and do my own and share some of it with him.
Oh and I forgot to mention they also sell bags of pre-prepared pizza dough for about 50p a bag so that you can go home and just get on and make your own pizza; now that was a good idea.
So for this evening we are going to have some of the fresh Italian bread and some of the cold meats that we bought from the deli counter which will give me a break from cooking.
Right I need to get a wriggle on I need to nip to the veg shop.
Catch you soon.