Amatriciana pasta is a beloved Italian dish that hails from the picturesque town of Amatrice in the Lazio region. This classic and comforting recipe is a celebration of simple yet robust flavors that have stood the test of time. The heart of Amatriciana pasta lies in its rich tomato sauce, harmoniously combined with the savory goodness of pancetta or guanciale, Italian cured meats. The sauce’s depth is enhanced by the gentle kick of red pepper flakes, adding a delightful hint of spice. This flavorsome sauce coats al dente spaghetti or bucatini pasta, providing the perfect canvas to capture every mouthwatering note. To finish, a generous sprinkle of Pecorino Romano cheese adds a distinct and salty kick, tying all the elements together. Whether enjoyed in the historic streets of Amatrice or savored in kitchens around the world, Amatriciana pasta is a cherished dish that captures the essence of traditional Italian cuisine in each delightful bite.
Here’s how to make this delicious Amatriciana pasta:
What You Need
- 14 ounces (400g) of spaghetti or bucatini pasta
- 4 ounces (100g) of pancetta or guanciale, diced
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 can (14 ounces/400g) of diced tomatoes (San Marzano tomatoes if possible)
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (adjust to your preferred spice level)
- 1/2 cup (120ml) dry white wine (optional)
- 1/2 cup (50g) grated Pecorino Romano cheese
- Salt and black pepper to taste
- Fresh parsley, chopped (for garnish)
What To Do
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta according to the package instructions until al dente. Reserve about 1/2 cup (120ml) of pasta water, then drain the pasta and set it aside.
In a large skillet or saucepan, heat a drizzle of olive oil over medium heat. Add the diced pancetta or guanciale and cook until it becomes crispy and releases its fat. Remove about half of the cooked meat from the pan and set it aside for garnishing later.
In the same skillet with the remaining pancetta or guanciale, add the chopped onion and minced garlic. Sauté until the onion becomes translucent and fragrant.
If using wine, pour it into the skillet, and let it simmer for a few minutes until it reduces slightly.
Add the diced tomatoes and red pepper flakes to the skillet. Stir well, and let the sauce simmer for about 10-15 minutes on low heat, allowing the flavors to meld and the sauce to thicken.
Toss the cooked pasta into the sauce, stirring to coat the pasta evenly. If the sauce seems too thick, add some of the reserved pasta water to reach your desired consistency.
Sprinkle the grated Pecorino Romano cheese over the pasta and mix until the cheese is melted and creates a creamy texture.
Season with salt and black pepper to taste. Be mindful of the salt as the Pecorino cheese is already salty.
Serve the Amatriciana pasta on plates, and garnish each serving with the reserved crispy pancetta or guanciale and chopped fresh parsley.
Enjoy this mouthwatering Amatriciana pasta, a timeless Italian dish that brings together the robust flavors of the region in one satisfying meal!