Penne amatriciana

Tom Parker Bowles serves a classic pasta dish, a rich tomato sauce with pancetta and chilli that has its origins in the town of Amatrice in central Italy
By Tom Parker Bowles
Penne amatriciana
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 3 hours 30 minutes
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Effort: easy


  • olive oil
  • 500 g thickly sliced smoked pancetta
  • 3 red onions, , chopped
  • 2-3 small dried chillies, crumbled
  • 1 handful chopped rosemary
  • 125 ml red wine
  • 4 x 400g can chopped tomatoes
  • 400 g penne pasta
  • 4 handfuls grated parmesan


1. Heat a splash of olive oil in a pan and fry the pancetta over a high heat for 6-8 minutes until crisp. Add the onions and gently fry until soft, about 15 minutes. Stir in the chilli and cook for 1-2 more minutes.

2. Pour in the wine and turn up the heat to high, cooking until the alcohol has evaporated. Stir, then add the chopped tomatoes and rosemary.

3. Reduce the heat to low and allow the sauce to simmer uncovered for about 3 hours, until thick and fairly dry.

4. Cook the penne in boiling salted water until al dente, about 10 minutes. Drain and set aside.

5. Stir 3 handfuls of the parmesan into the sauce and cook for 1 more minute, then mix with the pasta and season with black pepper. Serve on plates and scatter over the rest of parmesan.

Rate This Recipe