Troffie e Croxetti

February 28, 2011 / Food & Wine

A handmade pasta shaped like a string bean, you can find trofie all along the Italian Riviera restaurant menus and in Ligurians’ homes.

The traditional name “trofie” possibly derives from “strafuggià” (to rub), the movement done with one’s hands to make this kind of pasta.

In Liguria, trofie with basil or walnut pesto are traditionally served with cooked green beans and potatoes tossed in. Potatoes, green beans and pasta might sound like a strange combination, but we guarantee that you will love it once you try it!

Croxetti instead are an ancient Ligurian pasta that comes in small, round coin-shaped forms. In the past, powerful aristocratic Genovese families used to print their family crest on one side of this pasta as a sign of prestige.

Nowadays, for weddings and other special events, Ligurians still commission artisans to print family initials or other decorations on this pasta.

Anna Merulla

by Anna Merulla

Founder of Beautiful Liguria, a travel concierge service that offers everything from tour planning, hiking excursions, cooking lessons, personal shopping and much more in this great region. In 2009 she decided to begin sharing her personal knowledge of the beauty, the culture, and the history of Liguria in which she’s immersed every day.

16 Responses to “Troffie e Croxetti”

  1. Penny Ewles-Bergeron
    Penny Ewles-Bergeron

    I did wonder where the word ‘trofie’ came from. Now I know! Thank you. And since I can buy these here in Naples, these can be a regular treat. I haven’t seen croxetti in the stores or restaurants, so perhaps they have stayed to the north. (Now just wait for the super-informed IN readership to tell me where to get them…!)

  2. During a recent trip to Italy I was introduced to “trofie” pasta. Loved it. I found it in my little Italian grocer on the Main Line of Philadelphia. What a treat!! Must look for the “croxetti” next time.

  3. Great Note, Anna! Looking forward to more from Liguria. How nifty to have your initials on the pasta! Where does that x come from and how do you pronounce it? You’re on.

  4. giuseppe spano (jojo)
    giuseppe spano (jojo)

    or if you are as Americani, you may print a name or face on M&M’s

  5. Ciao a tutti! First of all thanks to all of you. Furthermore, I’d like to thank GB for welcoming me in Italiannotebook as a ligurian contributor!
    at Louise: This pasta started to be called “croxetti” because the image of a cross “x” was often impressed on the back part of this pasta. So the “x” just came from the Christian “cross”. In Italian X is pronounced [ks], as in the word “extra”.

  6. Ron Brown

    Welcome Anna. Enjoyed your note and introduction to a new pasta. I am looking forward to more posts from Ligudria

  7. Ciao and Grazie mille, Ron!
    at Nasira: Soon there will be posted a note with the recipe. Promise ;-)

  8. I ask the same question Nasira asks….so,where’s the recipe?

  9. Ciao Anna! Delicious post! And I agree, the green beans, potatoes, pesto and pasta combination is wonderful!

  10. Leslie

    Lovely, simply lovely! Potatoes are such a comfort food and extraordinarily versatile. Wonderful post!

  11. Madeline

    Is the pesto used in this green bean and potato receipe a Basil and
    Olive Pesto.?? There seems to be sooooo many Pesto’s these days..

  12. Madeline

    Ooops, I just re-read the article and I see Basil-Walnut Pesto..!!

  13. Christine Filiberti

    My husband and I just returned from an amazing trip to Italy. While there, I fell in love with trofie pasta and dying to find out where I can purchase this in the Philadelphia area. Does anyone have any suggestions? Your assistance is appreciated.


Leave a Reply