Spicy Ricotta Cavatelli with shrimps

This is soooooooo delicious!!

I always wanted to make my own Cavatelli and finally i did hehe. For my birthday lately i got a nice Vintage Cavatelli machine from Vitantonio n°50 by my husband. It’s pure vintage and still in good condition! This is a unique piece in the pasta world.
It was so hard to find it and i did on Ebay, but be quickly if you want one too, as they sell fast.

This is it

See the machine in action
Click on link below picture to see it working, 
cause Blogspot does not support video’s it seems

First i had to prepare the Cavatelli which i made with Ricotta. You can also make this with other things, like potatoes which then becomes more Gnocchi, or spinach or just with flour and water. But i like the taste of Ricotta :)
Once this is done, the dish is almost ready as there is hardly any sauce in it to prepare. That’s the trick about pasta who is already flavoured.


Serves 4

450 gr of normal Ricotta cheese
2 medium eggs
some salt 
About 520 gr of flour >> I used half Semolina with type 00

Cause Semolina makes sure your shapes stay as they are, it’s important to use Semolina for this as it’s reinforcing your dough and even maybe 2/3 semolina and 1/3 type 00 can work too. I’m still experimenting myself as you need a very steady dough to go through this machine to create your shapes, the same with any short pasta you make, the Semolina is most important.


Sift flour together with salt in a large bowl and make a well in the center.
Put in another bowl the Ricotta and add the 2 eggs in it.
Mix it well and then add slowly into the well of the flour bowl.
Now gently incorporate it all and mix with your hands until you have a homogenous ball of dough.
Put in in fridge for about 1 hour to rest.
While the dough is resting you can easily prepare the shrimps by peeling and cleaning and set aside till use. It is the most fun part and also most of the work of the whole recipe.


1 coffee cup pasta water (which you get while cooking the cavatelli)
4 slices of white bread without crust
4 tablespoons of good olive oil (i use Extra Vierge)
2 Garlic cloves, minced
1 dried Peperoncino chopped with seeds
450 gr of shrimps
1 sacket (about 45 gram) of Arugula (Rucola)
You definitely need Shaved Ricotta Salata cheese for the finishing touch

Now, Ricotta Salata is not easy to find in Belgium, i know. But go to a special italian store. There are several which have a variety of cheese. Search for one in your neighborhood on the internet, i was surprised how many italian stores you can find in Belgium. Ask for a quarter of the Ricotta Salata, as they can not slice it off just like that. The cheese is kinda crumbly. Not like the usual Ricotta that you know or that we use for the dough. I made a picture to show you. and it’s very easy to shave it on top of your dish at the end.

Ricotta Salata

1. Get your dough out of the fridge and divide it in 4 pieces and keep each piece aside wrapping it in plastic till use or a bowl with a lid. So start working with 1/4 piece to have not too much dough to work on at once. Roll dough to 1/4 inch thickness (5 to 6 mm) and cut dough in about 1 cm stripes, keep dusting them with semolina flour to make them steady and dry enough to go through the machine. They absolutely can not be sticky anymore or you will have problems with your machine, i started having problems too and then i decided to add more flour to it till it was right. 

2. To form the Cavatelli, place a piece of dough on the ridges side of the cavatelli paddle and then use your 2 fingers as your roll the dough forwards. so it’s a little bit helping it rolling.
Each Cavatelli should have a ridge on one side and a depression on the opposite side. Place them on a floured baking sheet or i used a Brownie baking tray and dusted it with semolina flour. After i finished 1 stripe i placed the Cavatelli’s on another big baking tray to let them dry. But remember, always dust your tools and trays to prevent sticking. Note : i did not really had to dust the cavatelli machine as my dough was dry enough.

3. When your done, let them dry and prepare your other ingredients in the meanwhile.
4. Take your bread slices and remove the crust. put them in a food processor or i used my Magimix Mini bowl which is the mill attachment to make a crumble of the bread with using only the pulse function, so you have total control over the size of the crumbs.

5. Heat 1 tablespoon of good olive oil in a pan on medium heat and add the bread crumbs, stir about 5 minutes and you will see it change color. Don’t let it burn, cause it won’t taste good anymore.
Set aside for later. Chop the peperoncino and mince the garlic. set aside.

6. Now you are ready to cook the Cavatelli.
Use a big pot filled with plenty of water. So the Cavatelli has room to cook, so it won’t stick together cause of lack of room. Add a little bit of salt and when the water is boiling, add the cavatelli gently. Let it cook for about 3 minutes, till it floats to the surface. 

7. While the Cavatelli is cooking, you can heat up a large pan or wok with the remaining 3 tablespoons of Olive oil, add the chopped peperoncino and minced garlic, stir for about 30 seconds, add the shrimps. Cook and stir for about 3 minutes until they look opaque and nicely baked all round. Do not bake longer, or they will not be juicy inside anymore. Add arugula, just stir till wilted. 

8. The cavatelli will be ready now, so you can add it to the wok together with the coffeecup of pasta water. add another 3 to 4 tablespoons of good olive oil to glace it all. The tastes come to live now....mmmmmmm....

9. Remove from the heat and serve immediately sprinkled with the roasted breadcrumbs and Shaved Ricotta Salata. I tell you....that is just the top of the top!!! The Ricotta really does it all.
Really try to find your ricotta somewhere. it’s really going to be worth it :-)

In pictures