For any of you that know Dr. Gaggi & his wife Rossana she always reiterates the importance of the pasta you choose with your sauce. "For amatriciana, you should use only bucatini or spaghetti no. 5!" She would be horrified to see the photo above since we tossed the sauce with fresh homemade tagliatelle - call the pasta police! (I still ate every last bite.)
I am a huge fan of guanciale di maiale (so much so I sing a song about it every time Jason uses it in a recipe), it is basically the best bacon ever! Here is another mouthwatering recipe using cured pig's cheek as a simple antipasto/appetizer: Crostini di Guanciale di Maiale
Amatriciana with Bucatini
4 oz./120 g cured pig's cheek (guanciale di maiale) or fresh pancetta or bacon, chopped
1 medium onion, sliced
1 clove of garlic
glug of olive oil
12 oz./325 g puree tomatoes (freshest, highest quality as possible) or jarred tomatoes passed through the food mill
grated pecorino or parmesan cheese
bucatini or spaghetti pasta
In a heavy pot heat the olive oil, add the clove of garlic & onions on low heat season with salt & chili flakes as you like. Sweat slowly without color for 10 minutes.
Add guanciale or pancetta cook for an additional 5 - 6 minutes without browning.
Remove garlic clove & add tomatoes. Bring up to boil, then lower the heat to a slow simmer for 30-35 minutes. Stir occasionally. Check seasonings.
Toss with fresh cooked pasta (bucatini is best) & fresh grated pecorino or parmesan and a little pasta water.