At Vivo & Vivo Mercato we only serve the finest imported Italian pastas made with a centuries-old processing method called the “Delicate Method”. The Delicate Method consists of long kneading, slow pressing, and drawing and drying at a low temperature to preserve the nutritional values of the durum wheat. This process ensures the highest quality, natural consistency, and flavor.
Description of the Delicate Method pasta making process:
- Mixing stage: each shape needs a convenient blend of durum wheat semolinas. From special silos, they automatically pass on to a measuring device that releases the correct amount of water and semolina. Cold kneading ( not above 35°F), controlled by experienced hands, prevents ‘thermic denaturation’ of gluten, the precious nutritional substance contained in the wheat.
- Kneading, pressing and drawing stage: from the kneading machine, the dough is gently pressed through a mould which prevents the ‘mechanical destruction’ of gluten and carbohydrates . Each shape of pasta has its own special mould with duplicate holes in the shape of the pasta being made. Our moulds are made using a special bronze alloy, that has many funnel-shaped ‘pasta rooms’, milled for each hole. The dough passes gently through these holes to take its final form: spaghetti, penne… etc. At this point pasta must be appropriately dried to be preserved.
- Drying stage at a low temperature to preserve the nutritional values of gluten: Long cuts (spaghetti, etc.) soon after drawing are hung on reeds and subjected to a drying process that takes place in drying rooms, on four levels with an alternating period of moderately warm ventilation and a ‘rest’ period. Short cuts (penne, etc.) : by special motor knives they are cut into segments while coming out of the mould and are placed on conveyor belts that push them into the drying room where they undergo the similar drying treatment described above for spaghetti pasta. When we speak of low temperature we mean that the temperature of the air in the drying room is no more than 54°C and that pasta reaches only 40°C. Due to a difference in shape and thickness each cut of our pasta has a different drying period which can vary from 24 to a total of 40 hours. Unlike the industrial drying systems at ‘high temperature’ (they reach 120°C with a drying time up to 3 hours), our Delicate Method permits to obtain the excellence of the nutritional quality, as it preserves the precious biological and nutritive values of durum wheat (carbohydrates, vegetable proteins: basis of the Mediterranean Diet) and, at the same time, the excellence of the organoleptic quality as it brings out that unique taste and that completely natural consistency which is so appreciated still today.
- Stabilization stage: once the drying process has taken place, the pasta needs to rest (for approximately 24 hours) in an advisably air-conditioned room before being weighed and packaged. Controls are carried out at every stage of the working process and of the packaging by our skilled and reliable Staff.