When you make friends with people from other countries, you have the benefit of learning a bit more of their place and yes, their culture. And you also get to know a bit more about their food. And in some instances, you also get a chance to taste what it is like.
Well, that is what happened when my husband and I got introduced to Dante Noaro at Ericka’s Pasta Story in Butuan City. This Italian businessman not only shared to my husband and me what his culture is like that one evening, we also had the added benefit of tasting the ravioli he personally prepared.
What is the ravioli? The ravioli (ravioli is plural by the way, it’s singular form is raviolo) are a traditional type of Italian cuisine. The ravioli are a type of filled pasta or dumpling. They are composed of a filling sealed between two layers of thin pasta dough. But as Dante has said, the sky is the limit in your imagination when you prepare any food 🙂 And so the ravioli he prepared had dough mixed with different ingredients: some with malunggay leaves (moringa oleifera) in the dough and some with squid ink!!
The filling also varied for that evening’s ravioli: pechay (Chinese cabbage), squid and chicken meat. Ravioli are usually served with broth or sauce. What we had that night was a choice of ravioli with tomato sauce and ravioli with sage and butter. My favorite was ravioli with malunggay 🙂 This was the one with pechay as filling and with sage and butter. It was supremely delicious 🙂
At the moment, ravioli is not yet fully offered at Ericka’s but you can order them by just giving them a call (tel. no. 341-3762 ) or getting in touch with them through Ericka’s Facebook page. They also have some good pasta and pizza that you can try. Some of these maybe a bit pricey from the more commercial ones we are used to but it’s because a good part of their ingredients come all the way from Repubblica italiana via Dante’s efforts, of course.
Dante visits the Philippines twice a year and personally trains the staff in preparing “real Italian food” (this is why their pasta and pizza do not taste like the ones usually sold in the country which are already “adjusted to Filipino taste”). And yes, he has inspired and collaborated in the creation of Ericka’s.
Dante had plenty of stories for us that evening at Ericka’s but one of the best things we remember was the taste of the ravioli 🙂 Want some? 🙂