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You're obliged to pretend respect for people and institutions you think absurd. You live attached in a cowardly fashion to moral and social conventions you despise, condemn, and know lack all foundation. It is that permanent contradiction between your ideas and desires and all the dead formalities and vain pretenses of your civilization which makes you sad, troubled and unbalanced. In that intolerable conflict you lose all joy of life and all feeling of personality, because at every moment they supress and restrain and check the free play of your powers. That's the poisoned and mortal wound of the civilized world. - Octave Mirbeau, The Torture Garden

10.07.20 0049 [PST]

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Bigoli all' Amatriciana

Here, the magnificent guanciale (pork jowl) adds depth, flavour and punch to this spicy classic.

Bigoli is a type of pasta made with water and hard durum wheat flour. Itís particularly popular in Rome and looks like a thick spaghetti and is perfect for absorbing sauce.

You could also use Bucatini which is long and hollow like a pasta straw and like Bigoli is made with water and hard durum wheat flour.

If youíve never tried it this is your golden opportunity. Whichever pasta you decide on this is a satisfying and comforting meal.

Bread and circus,


6 oz (170g) guanciale, diced
Olive oil (optional)
2 large cloves gariic, chopped
Heat a large frying pan over medium heat, add the guanciale and cook for about 5 minutes, or until golden brown.
If the guanciale is on the lean side, add a splash of olive oil. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
1 tsp red chili flakes
2 cups San Marzano passata
1 lb (0.45kg) bucatini pasta

In the same pan with the fat, add garlic and chili flakes and saute for 1 - 2 minutes over medium heat, until fragrant.

Add passata, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes.

Kosher salt, to taste

1/2 cup grated or shaved Pecorino cheese

Crusty bread, sliced, to serve

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

Add bucatini and cook for 10 minutes, until itís still firm and about 80% cooked.

Drain, then add pasta to sauce and cook for another 5 minutes, or until itís al dente.

Transfer pasta to a serving platter and garnish with pecorino and crispy guanciale. Serve with a rustic red wine and crusty bread.

Serves 4