You almost don't find this pasta in the restaurants. I did only once but instead of the classic linguine that goes with it, they mixed it with a kind of short pasta and they also give you a gigantic bib so that you don't dirty your shirt. It's really the dish that you should never eat with someone you are trying to impress. Or actually, the dish that you should eat when you want to ward off someone.
This pasta is a must-try but can be quite a nuisance when preparing and eating because of the black ink. I cleaned the cuttlefish on my own on one or two occasions but I swore I won't clean them again. I broke the ink sacs and I made a black mess. Now our fishmongers do it. If you have to clean them on your own, don't forget to wear disposable gloves and a big apron to cover your clothes. The ink stays in the fingers for some time even after washing frequently.
In case you find yourself without the ink, like what happened to me already, don't worry. Continue cooking without the ink. It will still come out delicious. Nowadays, in Italy, you can buy the cuttlefish ink in commercially packed little packages. I usually have one in the refrigerator for emergency cases when I accidentally throw the fresh ink sacs or the fishmonger forgets to include them with the cleaned cuttlefish.
Linguine al Nero di Seppia (Cuttlefish Black Ink)
- 350 - 400 g. linguine
- 500 g. medium cuttlefish, cleaned & diced
- ink sacs of the cuttlefish
- 500 g. cherry tomatoes, quartered
- bunch of parsley, chopped finely
- 3 - 4 cloves garlic, halved
- salt & pepper
- 1 chili
- 1 cup white wine
- extra virgin olive oil
- Boil water for the pasta. When the water boils, add salt then the pasta. Follow what is written in the packet for the number of minutes you should cook them. Just remember that the sauce should cook ahead of the pasta, not the other way around.
- Saute' garlic & chili in a saucepan with extra virgin olive oil. When they turn golden, discard. Add diced cuttlefish. Cook on medium flame until liquid is is reduced by half.