‘Struncatura’ is a special quality of pasta produced along the Tyrrhenian belt of Reggio Calabria’s province and, more specifically, in the Gioia Tauro plain.
Legend has it that it was made from wheat and bran milling residuals, even picked up from the floor! However, its origin, name and particular shape, originated in a pasta factory founded in Gioia Tauro by Amalfi entrepreneurs.
They made this product out of leftovers of previous pasta cuts (in Calabrian dialect – stroncare, or struncare means ‘to cut’), which were left to dry for just one day and packaged. Once collected, the dried residual dough was mixed with oil, put back into the rolling mill and shaped in linguine: a pasta
variety that shows a peculiar colour due to the dough’s oxidation process.
Therefore, this was a second-choice pasta, sold at a lower price than the white one. It was purchased cheaply and seasoned with salted sardines dissolved in heated olive oil. Instead of the more expensive cheese, a sprinkle of toasted breadcrumbs completed the dish.
Yet, the result was, even then, a delicious, cheap and also very energetic meal. It is, therefore, no coincidence that even today, ‘Struncatura’ remains one of the most popular and typical dishes of the Reggio Calabria area.