Pasta actually is served as the Primi Piatti, the first course . It comes after the antipasti which are appetizers,
Then there is much more on the menu. The Secondi or Main course, usually a meat or fish dish, along with Contorni which are side dishes and vegetables. Then follows the Dolci or dessert and ending with coffee or liqueur.
It is possible to eat Italian food for a month and not touch pasta or pizza.
In India we seem to have taken those two forms of food to heart and pasta is now on the menu in every little resturant offering MULTI CUISINE. This means," Indian, tandoori, Punjabi, Chinese, Thai ,Continental" and now Italian.
We tend to cook pasta as the main dish with the addition of meat and veg in the sauce. Here is an Arrabiata made "angrier' with the addition of green chillies.
400 gms Margherite
500 gms mince
2 tbs olive oil
4 garlic minced
1 green or red chilli
200 ml tomato paste
1 tsp dried Italian seasoning
1 tbs basil leaves torn
2 tbs Grated Parmesan ( optional)
Heat the olive oil and saute the garlic, chopped chilli and onions till soft.Add the chopped tomatoes and cook till all the juice has come out. Add the mince and cook, stirring frequently till brown, about 5 minutes. Now add the dried herbs, the tomato paste and the basil.Cover and cook for 30 minutes. Check the liquid level and top up with 1/3 cup water if necessary.
Cook the pasta in salted water for 14 minutes and drain.
Spoon over a generous amount of the Mince Arrabiata, grate some cheese on top and serve hot.