HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >


What sauce would you make with tagliatelle and farfalle?


I've got a surplus of dried tagliatelle and farfalle and I'd appreciate some ideas of how to sauce it. I am 0.0% Italian by birth and whenever I try to make pasta sauce it always regresses towards the mean and turns into a generic tomato sauce. Complex and challenging recipes welcome!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Although nearly opposite in shape, both of these pastas can be great with fluid sauces, like cream, pesto or tomato sauces. I'd lean toward the farfalle, however, whenever chunks are involved (say, with chunks of sausage or portabella mushroom).

    When decent cherry tomatoes are available, my favorite way with farfalle (bowtie) is to do a caprese-salad style "summer sauce" that doesn't even need to be cooked! I'll paste in how I described this in an earlier thread, and give the thread link thereafter, because Bushwickgirl and Kattyeyes gave some useful followup tips:

    --Cook a pound of bowtie pasta;
    --Meanwhile, cut about a half pound of fresh (not brick) mozzarella into roughly half-inch dice (and, following a Cooks Illustrated tip, lay out the mozzarella cubes on a plate and place for a few minutes into the freezer, this keeps them from getting gummy later);
    --Chop or chiffonade a handful of fresh basil;
    --Take 10-16 ounces of cherry tomatoes and cut each one in half;
    --have your best olive oil and (if you like) parmaggiano cheese ready.
    --When the pasta is ready, drain it and empty some of it into a bowl; dump in the mozzarella cubes, tomatoes, basil, salt, pepper, and olive oil to taste; give a stir and then the rest of the pasta. Let everything sit a minute or so to warm all the ingredients.
    --Give it another toss, add some oil or salt maybe, and then serve with crusty bread and, if using, parmesan.


    1. Here's a delicious and easy farfalle recipe from epicurious. It sounds simple, but tastes special. You can also add a little vodka or white wine to deglaze the pan before adding the tomatoes.


      1. For the farfalle, I like to use roast chicken, and make an alfredo sauce with spinach. It couldn't be easier and its delicious, Toss red pepper flakes into the sauce for extra zippiness, and add chiffonade of basil and fresh tiny tomatoes for freshness.
        Tagliatelle to me means spicy marinara with tuna.

        1. The classic sauce for tagliatelle is Bolognese ragu. Consider yourself lucky to have tagliatelle. Difficult to find where I live!

          2 Replies
          1. re: PAO

            Fettuccine and tagliatelle are interchangeable. Can you find fettuccine?

            1. re: PAO

              Fresh regular, or spinach tagliatelle is really good.

            2. Giada has a recipe I am a little addicted to (sausage, artichoke hearts, sundried tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, herbs, white wine, broth, parmesan), that calls for fusilli, but I've made it with most any pasta I have on hand. It can be a wee bit pricy for such a simple sauce, but that is one recipe I find room for in the budget, when the craving strikes.

              1. Jamie Oliver has a luscious seafood pasta with saffron that is wonderful with tagliatelle.

                1. I had a wonderful recipe for farfalle that had salmon, red onion, capers , cream cheese and dill = fantastic. let me see if I can find one that looks right:

                  this is it from Food Everyday! It was excellent, of course if you know me on this site, I do love my salmon, cream cheese

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: lexpatti

                    I've made that one, minus the cream cheese. But yes that's another protien excellent with farfalle.

                  2. I like tagliatelle tossed with leftover pot roast that has fallen apart with beefy gravy, so good. Farfalle makes the prettiest salads. Easiest is ranch type dressing with shredded carrots and dethawed petite peas. I put some dressing in the bottom of a bowl then the frozen peas and toss the hot (very al dente) pasta on top of that, then the carrots on top of that and give it all a toss. Let it cool and see if it needs more dressing. I've done this with lots of different; usually spring veg, but peas and carrots are my main stays.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: just_M

                      just M, I think I will try this with a beef shank roast. Thanks for the tip!

                    2. For the tagliatelle, If you like the savory bite of worcestershire sauce:
                      Saute a diced onion, add heavy cream and gently reduce for 5 mins or so, add what you think is too much worcestershire sauce and a little tomato sauce, cook for another couple minutes to allow the flavors to develop together.
                      Very important- add the pasta to the sauce and let them cook together for a few mins, adding a touch of the pasta water if the sauce seems too tight.
                      A sprinkle of parm, and you're good to go.

                      1. For something a little different (not low fat though - you've been warned!)

                        1 onion, diced
                        3 stalks celery, diced
                        2 bell peppers (any color) diced
                        3 cloves garlic, minced
                        1/2 lb shrimp
                        salt and pepper
                        olive oil
                        1/2 - 1 cup heavy cream
                        cajun or creole spice blend of your choice

                        Sautee the veggies in the olive oil all together until the onions are translucent. Salt and pepper to taste. Toss the shrimp into the pan and let them cook until they start to turn pink around the edges. Then add a tablespoon or so of your spice blend and pour the cream on top. Cook until the shrimp are cooked through and the cream has thickened.

                        Pour the whole shebang over 1 lb of boiled farfalle.

                        You want a crisp white wine with this to cut the cream. Oh so delicious!

                        1. Easy dinner, while the tagialtelle is cooking, saute a good amount of mixed sliced mushrooms (preferably wild ones) add 3-4 cloves minced garlic and cherry tomatoes, amount to taste, in a mix of good olive oil and unsalted butter, toss in a sliced fresh red chili or a tsp or so of crushed red peppper, add 1/2 cup of chicken, mushroom (if you use dried rehydrated porcinis as part of your mushroom makeup, use the strained soaking water) or vegetable stock, let reduce for a few minutes, until the tomatoes are tender and bursting, and toss with the pasta and a good handful of chopped parsley. Season well and serve with grated Parmigiano.

                          The tomatoes can be oven roasted first, then added to the pasta at the tossing stage, or you can use a ladle or two of marinara when reducing the sauce; just cut back on the stock. A splash of white or red wine in this sauce doesn't hurt at all. Basil is a nice herb for this, instead of parsley.

                          I like this farfalle salad with pesto, black olives and peas, from epicurious:


                          1. All of these replies are terrific. But one very nice treatment of pasta you hardly see in the U.S. is to toss it with fried breadcrumbs. It is the same general effect as egg noodles and croutons. It was often used in the south of Italy, especially when cheese was unavailable. If you like, fry the crumbs in olive oil seasoned with a bit of garlic. Toss it with the pasta. If you want to get fancy, add in some olive or capers. And, if you really want cheese, some pecorino. Maybe some chopped parsley, too.

                            1 Reply