Rigatoni Amatriciana

There’s a restaurant about ten minutes from my parents’ house that makes the most amazing Amatriciana sauce I’ve ever had!  It’s so delicious that I’ve even had dreams about it.  (Sad, I know!)  When my parents took me and my husband there for my birthday, the waitress wasn’t at all surprised to receive four identical orders–Cavatelli Amitriciana!  Since it’s one of my all-time favorite dishes, I’ve ordered it in many restaurants, including in Boston’s North End, NYC’s Little Italy, and even in Umbria, Italy near where the recipe originated in Amatrice.  This recipe here rivals some of the best restaurant versions I’ve tasted.  I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

By the way, in case you have no idea how to pronounce the word Amitriciana, here’s a phonetic guide:  “Ah-mah-tritch-ee-ah-na”.  Now you’ll sound like a pro when you serve this recipe!

Rigatoni Amatriciana
Yield:  6 servings
Time:  40 minutes

8 oz. pancetta
1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
2 large onions, coarsely chopped
1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
1 tsp. salt
Two 28 oz. cans crushed tomatoes
1 lb. rigatoni (I prefer mezzi rigatoni…it’s a smaller version)
¼ cup fresh finely chopped parsley
½ cup finely grated fresh Parmesan

  1.  Sauté the pancetta in olive oil over medium-low heat until the fat is rendered and the pancetta begins to turn golden brown, about 10 minutes.
  2. Add the chopped onions, crushed red pepper flakes and salt to the pancetta.  Cook over medium heat until the onions soften and turn translucent.
  3. Stir in the crushed tomatoes and bring to a low boil.  Simmer for 15 to 45 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, cook the pasta for one minute less that what is recommended on the package.  Once done, drain and toss into the sauce.  Continue cooking over medium heat for 5-10 minutes to give the pasta time to soak up all those gorgeous flavors!
  5. Garnish with fresh parsley and Parmesan.  Enjoy!!

PDF to Print Recipe for Rigatoni Amatriciana