Pizza & Pasta: Where to get it

ITALIAN-AMERICAN COOKING WILL TAKE its place at the table as a top food trend in 2012, predicts Saveur magazine. Regional Italian food also is high on the list. Some menu items and area restaurants that serve notable ones are:

LASAGNA Tofanelli’s Lasagna is made in-house from a recipe handed down from generations, with layers of pasta, meat sauce, spinach and cheese. Simplicity Bistro’s vegetable lasagna is made from homemade pasta with mozzarella, grilled eggplant and zucchini in a creamy tomato sauce. In Auburn, Tre Pazzi serves an authentic home-made lasagna.

MEATBALL SANDWICH 151 Union Square in Grass Valley serves a meatball sandwich with fresh-shaved parmesan cheese and homemade meatballs and sauce. Kane’s is a classic meatball sandwich, akin to Original Joe’s in San Francisco.

PIZZA Lefty’s Grill in Nevada City has grilled flat-bread pizzas on oval, thin crusts. Some are unique: The Napa-style pizza features mozzarella cheese, sliced pear, Gorgonzola, balsamic syrup drizzle and fresh oregano and thyme. In Grass Valley: Kane’s stone-baked pizzas include Pizza Margherite (four cheeses, fresh tomato and basil), Pizza Napolitana and a Sushi Pizza (with seared Ahi tuna, cucumber, cilantro, ginger and carrot). Goomba’s pizza is cooked in an oven imported from Italy.

RAVIOLI Bear River Pasta Co. makes fresh ravioli daily. It is stuffed with cheeses, chicken, meat, Porcini mushrooms or crab and other items. No artificial flavorings or preservatives are used. Their lunch specials change daily. Example: Artichoke Gorgonzola Ravioli with sun-dried tomato cream sauce, garden salad and garlic bread. Kane’s serves a butternut squash ravioli. Villa Venezia has a cheese ravioli with roasted eggplant in fresh tomato sauce. All three are located in Grass Valley.

SEAFOOD PASTA In Grass Valley, Tofanelli’s Seafood Fettuccini is a sauté of large gulf shrimp and sea scallops with sun-dried tomato, asparagus, mushroom, fresh herbs and a splash of white wine. It also offers Smoked Salmon Fettuccini and Seafood Risotto. Matteo’s Public in Nevada City serves a Fettuccini with clams, tomato, green onion, shallots and garlic in a white wine sauce.

SPAGHETTI Kane’s offers three sauces: Bolognese, Napolitana and Al’olio (olive oil sauté with garlic and parsley). Goomba’s serves a classic spaghetti with meatballs. Bear River Pasta Co. offers fresh-made pasta and sauces “to go” or eat there.

(Photo: Peter Oaks)

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