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Uncooked strozzapreti from Romagna
Place of originItaly

Strozzapreti (Italian: [ˌstrɔttsaˈprɛːti]; lit.'priest choker' or 'priest strangler'[1]: 152 [2]) are an elongated form of cavatelli, or hand-rolled pasta typical of the Emilia-Romagna, Tuscany, Marche and Umbria regions of Italy as well as in the state of San Marino. The name is also used for a baked cheese and vegetable dumpling, prepared in some regions of Italy and on the French island of Corsica.

Origin of name

There are several legends to explain the name, primarily based on the anticlerical sentiment of the region.

One is that gluttonous priests were so enthralled by the savory pasta that they ate too quickly and choked themselves.[1] Another explanation involves the azdora ('housewife' in the Romagna dialect), who "chokes" the dough strips to make the strozzapreti. The azdora would express rage (perhaps triggered by the misery and difficulties of her life) and curse the local clergy, resulting in a pasta that could choke a priest.[3] A third states that wives would customarily make the pasta for churchmen as partial payment for land rents (in Romagna, the Catholic Church had extensive land properties rented to farmers), and their husbands would be angered enough by the venal priests eating their wives' food to wish the priests would choke as they stuffed their mouths with it. The name surely reflects the diffuse anticlericalism of the people of Romagna and Tuscany.

Another possible explanation is that following Sunday Mass, it was common for the priest to visit homes of the villagers and enjoy dinner with them. The more pleasant experiences for the priest would entice them to come back to that particular home more frequently. As a means for the family to let the priest know that he might be overextending his welcome, they would serve this pasta which had later earned the name strozzapreti. Another origin story is that the pasta resembles a clerical collar, commonly referred to as a "priest choker".


The name strozzapreti can refer either to a fresh pasta type or to a gnocchi type.

Pasta types

The dough (see some regional variations below) is rolled out in thick flat sheets. It is then cut into strips. The strips are lightly rolled or twisted between the palms. The large pasta is separated into 10 cm pieces by pinching. Unlike spaghetti or macaroni, this pasta is not uniform in size or shape.

Gnocchi types

See also


  1. ^ a b Gavin, Paola (1994). Italian Vegetarian Cooking. Rowman & Littlefield. ISBN 9780871317698.
  2. ^ Strozza is third person singular indicative of strozzare
  3. ^ Monica (2022-09-22). "Strozzapreti pasta of Romagna: history and recipe". Tortellini&CO. Retrieved 2023-01-13.
  4. ^ "Strozzapreti". giallozafferano (in Italian). Retrieved 2 February 2022.
  5. ^ Maria Pia Timo (2015). La Vespa Teresa. Ricette e storie di donne di Romagna (in Italian). LT..
  6. ^ "Strozzapreti romagnoli" (in Italian). Il Giornale del cibo. 9 January 2020.
  7. ^ "Strangolapreti in Trentino – Italian bread and spinach dumplings". Retrieved 2022-01-21.
  8. ^ "Priest Chokers". Archived from the original on March 2, 2011. Retrieved Oct 17, 2019.