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Maccheroni alla Calabrese





1-1/8 lb. maccheroni
5-1/3 oz. lard *
3-1/2 oz. prosciutto crudo, chopped
1 sprig parsley, chopped
3 tbsp. olive oil
5 lg. ripe tomatoes
1 sm. onion, diced
Basil and garlic, to taste
Freshly grated pecorino romano cheese
Salt and fresh ground pepper


Peel and chop tomatoes. In skillet, fry onion in oil. When browned, add parsley, basil, garlic, prosciutto and black pepper; fry for few minutes. Add tomatoes and cook for about 30 minutes.

Cook pasta al dente. Drain and season with melted lard and black pepper. Layer pasta in 9x13-inch baking dish, alternating layers with sauce and grated cheese. With remaining lard, melt and brown over heat until golden brown. Drizzle over pasta and bake in oven at 180°C/350°F for about 20 minutes.

Author's Comments

* Lard was commonly used in southern Italy in the past. You can substitute this with butter, or even oil in certain recipes.

I translated a few recipes from an Italian cookbook my mother has and I had to share them with everyone. The recipes I translated are traditional Calabrese.

Also, many true Italian recipes don't give exact amounts of ingredients, it's done by taste and look. So try and try again if something doesn't seem right, that's what makes Italian cooking fun!

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