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Agnolotti (Traditional Filled Pasta)

  • 2 hours and 35 minutes
  • Difficult
  • First Courses
This succulent stuffed pasta is typical of Piemontese cuisine.

Ingredients: Per 6 servings

  • 1 lb lean beef
  • 7 oz spinach, boiled
  • 1 onion
  • 3 ½ oz butter
  • 1 sprig rosemary
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons tomato sauce
  • broth to taste
  • grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese to taste
  • nutmeg to taste
  • 1 lb all-purpose flour
  • 5 eggs
  • salt and pepper to taste


Place a saucepan over medium heat. Add 2 oz of butter and as soon as the butter has melted, add the peeled garlic clove and thinly sliced onion. Ass soon as they start to brown, add the meat and turn heat down to low. Brown the meat on all sides, then dust with 1 tbsp flour. Season with salt and add the tomato sauce and enough broth to completely cover the meat. Cook over low heat until the meat is soft, but not falling apart. Then, remove the pan from the heat.

Remove the meat from the sauce and set the sauce aside for later. Chop the meat in a food processor with the spinach (previously blanched for a couple of minutes in boiling water and well drained.) Transfer the chopped meat and spinach to a bowl and stir in an egg yolk, a generous amount of grated Parmigiano Reggiano, a pinch of pepper and a dusting of nutmeg.

Then prepare the pasta dough by forming a well with the flour. Add 4 eggs and the remaining egg white to the center and begin incorporating the flour. Add a drop of water if necessary. Knead until you have a smooth dough. Let the dough rest for 20 minute, covered with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap.

Using a rolling pin or pasta machine, roll out the dough into two thin sheets. On the first sheet place a tbsp of pasta stuffing 1 ½ to 2 inches from one another. Cover with the other sheet and squeeze the dough around the filling to remove any air. Use a pasta cutter or knife blade to cut out the agnolotti.

Cook the agnolotti in a large pot of boiling salted water for 5 minutes. Then remove using a slotted spoon and toss with the previously prepared sauce, reheated for a couple of minutes. Also add the remaining melted butter and a good amount of grated cheese.

Serve hot.

Food History

Agnolotti are the Piemontese version of ravioli. Together with tortellini and anolini, agnolotti are one of the most famous types of Italian stuffed pasta.
Due to their simple shape, it is possible that they were the first time of stuffed pasta, plus the word agnolotti dates back to the 12th century. In a document from the time period, it is written that a Piemontese farmer worked hard to please his boss by giving him, in addition to various fresh foods, a precise number of agnolotti.
Legend has it that agnolotti were invented in Piemonte to celebrate the end of a siege. According to the story, the Marquis asked to Angelot, his chef, to prepare an elaborate dinner in celebration. The chef realized that there wasn’t much food left in the pantry and decided to use the left over meat from the previous days, serving it as stuffing for an egg pasta dough. The Marquis loved the recipe and decided to call the dish “agnolotti” in honor if the chef who invented the dish.

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