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The Martelli family began making pasta under its name in 1926, but relatives had been working at the pasta factory in place there since the 1870’s. Martelli pasta is made in all the right ways:
- They use the hardest durum wheat, which gives the pasta its firm consistency
- They mill the grain themselves in order to protect its flavor
- Mixing and pasta shaping with bronze dies are performed slowly and at low temperatures to protect the pasta’s integrity
- The pasta is dried slowly at a low temperature for 50 hours, keeping the pasta from becoming too dry or brittle (industrial pasta makers use high heat and quick-drying techniques to achieve quantity not quality); the Martelli family also constantly monitors the pasta as it dries in case temperature adjustments need to be made
Martelli pasta comes in just four shapes: spaghetti, spaghettini, maccheroni, and penne. If you’re looking for a hearty meal, the spaghetti are more thickly cut than most brands. We were a little surprised that the Martelli penne are smooth and don’t have ridges (rigate), despite the use of bronze dies, but we highly recommend the maccheroni—it’s perfect, of course, for making maccheroni and cheese.