Get to know our Digital Marketing and Ecommerce Manager, Nicolo, who’s been telling us all about what an Italian Christmas in Parma looks (and tastes) like. He’s taking over his grandma’s role of making a magical pasta treat called cappelletti this year – and, being the number one bello that he is, he’s given us her secret family recipe.
Wax is everything we love about London. We’re from all across the globe, united by everything that makes us unique – and, as a result, Christmas has a different meaning for us all, depending on our roots and heritage.
Read on for Nicolo’s family Christmas recipe, and discover what’s on his Wax wishlist.
What does Christmas mean to you?
Family, friends, food. Spending time with the people I feel the most at home with.
What’s your favourite thing about the festivities in Parma?
Probably the fact that Christmas isn’t just one day – my family makes it last over three days, from the 24th until the 26th, and we celebrate it in three different places with three different menus and family members. It’s a chance to see all my family from my mum and dad’s side.
Do you have any duties usually on Christmas Day?
My grandma has always been in charge of making our classic Christmas lunch, which is actually two main dishes: a selection of different slow cooked meats and then cappelletti – a homemade stuffed pasta, which is cooked in the same broth that the meat was cooked in. It’s my favourite Christmas tradition, but sadly my grandma’s too old to cook it now and my mum always just buys it readymade, so I’m in charge of it this year. The secret recipe has skipped a generation!
How do you make it, can you give us your tips?
- Add butter to a big pot, followed by onion, carrots and celery. Next comes the meat and seasoning. Once everything is a good colour add red wine and water. You need to cook it with a lid for 3 hours, adding tomato concentrate halfway through.
- In the meantime, pour the flour onto the kneading board, create a well in the middle and break the eggs into it, knead well until you obtain a smooth and even dough. Wrap the dough in cling film and let sit for at least 20 minutes
- When it's done, add it to a bowl with Parmigiano Reggiano, breadcrumbs and vegetables, along with eggs and nutmeg. Mix well and let it sit.
- Roll out your dough and place the fill in patches on one half. Fold the other half over, seal tightly and then separate the cappelletti.
- Cook them in some meat broth for 5-6 minutes and then serve in the broth.
Complicated as you can tell!
What’s your favourite Christmas tradition?
Me and some friends have made a new tradition actually, which is meeting up after Christmas dinner for drinks at one of our houses and having a bit of a party. I’m looking forward to that a lot… but also just feeling the vibe at home with all the decorations up, Christmas tree and lights.
Is there anything you’d like to change about Christmas?
Christmas is so lovely if you have friends and family to spend it with – but if you don’t, it’s incredibly lonely, so I think it would be good if pre-existing charities created events where anyone can come along and have food and drinks together, listen to music and make new friends.
And finally, what’s on your Wax wishlist?
I really like the Eden Scarves, especially the yellow/navy. The Sterling roll neck goes on there, with the Munro cardigan in burgundy. And then the Kurt Jumbo Cords are super comfy.