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Tagliatelle all'amatriciana

Tagliatelle all'Amatriciana
serves 4
prep 20 mins cook 25 mins


900g (2lb) ripe, full-flavoured tomatoes
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
115g (4oz) pancetta, cubed
1 onion, finely chopped
1 celery stick, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 hot red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
salt and freshly ground black pepper
600g (1lb 5oz) fresh tagliatelle or 450g (1lb) dried


1 - Put the tomatoes in a heatproof bowl. Nick each with the point of a sharp knife, then pour over enough boiling water to cover. Leave for 30 seconds, or until the skins start to split. Drain, leave to cool a little, then peel and roughly chop.

2 - Heat the oil in a heavy-based non-stick saucepan and cook the pancetta over a moderately high heat for 2-3 minutes, or until beginning to brown. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon, leaving the fat behind, and transfer to a small plate. Reduce the heat.

3 - Add the onion and celery to the pan, and cook for 5-6 minutes, or until softened. Stir in the garlic and chilli and cook for 1 minute, then add the chopped tomatoes, and season to taste with salt and pepper. Simmer gently, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes, or until the sauce is well reduced and thick.

4 - Meanwhile, cook the pasta in plenty of lightly salted boiling water, for 1-2 minutes if using fresh tagliatelle, or 10-12 minutes if using dried, or until the pasta is al dente. Drain well.

5 - Tip the pasta back into the pan, add the pancetta, and pour in the sauce. Gently toss together, season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper, and serve.

Tips: If you can't find ripe, full-flavoured tomatoes, use two 400g cans of plum tomatoes with their juice instead. Taste the sauce after making, and if it needs a little more flavour, stir in 1 tbsp sun-dried tomato paste.


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