Polpettine di Tonno e Pappardelle (Tuna Meatballs with Pappardelle)

Enjoy a luxurious pasta dish with Aldo Zilli's flavourful recipe for papperdelle served with fresh tuna meatballs in tomato sauce
By Aldo Zilli
Polpettine di Tonno e Pappardelle (Tuna Meatballs with Pappardelle)
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Effort: easy



  • 400 g pappardelle
  • 1 tbsp chopped flat leaf parsley, to garnish

For the tuna meatballs:

  • 500 g fresh tuna
  • 4 spring onions, finely chopped
  • 2 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 large shallots, finely chopped
  • 2 red chillies, deseeded and finely chopped
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 tbsp parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp fresh coriander, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp leaves basil
  • black pepper
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 100 g fine breadcrumbs
  • 100 ml olive oil

For the sauce:

  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 500g jar of tomato passata


1. First make the tuna meatballs. In a mixing bowl, mix together the tuna, spring onions, garlic, shallots, chillies, oregano, parsley, coriander and basil. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper.

2. Add the egg yolks and 50g of breadcrumbs, mixing well.

3. Shape the tuna mixture into small balls, then roll them in the remaining breadcrumbs.

4. Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy-based frying pan. Add in the tuna balls and fry for 3-4 minutes until golden brown on all sides.

5. To make the sauce, heat the extra-virgin olive oil in a saucepan. Add in the onion and garlic and fry for 3 minutes until softened. Add the passata and simmer for about 10 minutes.

6. Add the tuna balls to the tomato sauce and cook for a further 4 minutes.

7. Meanwhile, bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Add in the papperdelle, drain and toss with the tuna balls and tomato sauce.

8. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper, sprinkle with the parsley and serve immediately.

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