How to Make True Fettuccine alla Papalina Traditional Roman Recipe
Fettuccine alla Papalina. The chef of a small “trattoria” in Rome, located close to the Vatican City, made this unique variation of the Amatriciana recipe, more appealing to his clientele. Pancetta and pecorino cheese make the Amatriciana dish too salty, and the traditional “bucatini” are too low class, he tought. Therefore he decided to substitute them with prosciutto and parmigiano cheese and used freshly made fettuccine instead. The dish actually turned out to be excellent.
An unknown cardinal of modest habits was ordering this pasta very often. The cardinal became later Pope Pius XII, and the dish was then dedicated to commemorate this event.
prepare fresh fettuccine according to the recipe
(fresh fettuccine can be substituted with dry fettuccine noodles)
4 oz (115 gr) butter
1 large scallion, finely chopped
4 oz (115 gr) prosciutto, diced
4 oz (120 gr) parmigiano reggiano cheese, freshly grated
2 tablespoons heavy cream
salt and pepper
Fill a stockpot with water and bring to a boil.
While waiting for the water to boil, place half of the butter in a frying pan. Turn the heat to medium.
When the butter starts foaming add the scallion . . .
. . . and prosciutto. Sauté until the scallion is soft.
In a small bowl, beat the eggs, half of the parmigiano cheese, and the cream
When the water comes to a boil, add salt and cook the fettuccine, checking for readiness from time to time. In a skillet large enough to contain the pasta, put the rest of the butter and turn heat to medium.
Add the sautéed prosciutto, salt and pepper. Turn heat off.
When the pasta is al dente, (firm but not too soft or overcooked), drain the pasta and drop it over the egg mix in the skillet.
Toss thoroughly. Transfer to a bowl.
Top with the rest of the parmigiano cheese, toss, and serve at once.