Spiedini di Provatura

Cheese Skewers with Anchovy Sauce


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

The Italian Regional Cookbook

The Italian Regional Cookbook

By Valentina Harris

Published 2017

  • About

Provatura is basically a Roman version of mozzarella. It tends to be slightly more solid and less creamy than mozzarella. If you can’t get hold of it, you can instead use scamorza (matured and sometimes smoked mozzarella) or fresh mozzarella that has been allowed to harden slightly over 3 or 4 days. In fact, this is a useful recipe for using up any mozzarella that is past its best. It’s perfect cooked over a barbecue, but can be cooked under a grill too. You could offer the anchovy sauce separately, if you prefer.


  • 300 g/11 oz provatura or scamorza cheese
  • 1 small loaf of crusty bread or sliced white bread
  • 150 g/5 oz/10 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 large salted anchovies, boned, rinsed and patted dry on kitchen paper
  • 30 ml/2 tbsp milk
  • ground black pepper


  1. Soak four wooden skewers in water for 30 minutes. Cut the cheese and bread into equal-sized pieces about 2cm/¾in thick.
  2. Thread the cheese and bread alternately on to the skewers, making sure that they are packed together as tightly as possible.

  3. Cook the skewers on a barbecue or under a a grill or broiler until the cheese is just running and the bread is crisp.
  4. Meanwhile, put the butter and anchovies into a small pan and warm over a low heat (you can do this on a corner of the barbecue), stirring constantly until the anchovies have been reduced to a smooth cream.

  5. Stir in the milk as the mixture begins to amalgamate. Season with black pepper.

  6. Arrange the skewers on a serving platter, cover with the anchovy sauce and serve hot.