Spaghetti con La bottarga

Spaghetti with Dried Fish Roe


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

The Italian Regional Cookbook

The Italian Regional Cookbook

By Valentina Harris

Published 2017

  • About

Bottarga is one of Sardinia’s most important ingredients. It consists of tightly packed dried fish roe, which can be red mullet, grey mullet, tuna or other fish. The bottarga is often sliced in transparent shavings over the finished dish with the same ceremony that is afforded to truffles in other regions of Italy. Cheaper, ready-grated bottarga is also available and can be bought in jars or sachets.


  • 400 g/14 oz spaghetti
  • 90 g/ oz bottarga, in a solid piece
  • 75 ml/5 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, halved
  • 30 ml/2 tbsp chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
  • ground black pepper


  1. Bring a large pan of lightly salted water to a rolling boil. Add the spaghetti and stir. Return to the boil and cook for 8 minutes or according to the pack instructions until al dente. Drain and return to the pan, reserving some pasta water.
  2. Grate the bottarga finely. Heat the oil in a large pan and fry the garlic for 5 minutes, or until golden, then take the pan off the heat.

  3. Discard the garlic. Add two-thirds of the bottarga to the pan with 25 ml/ tbsp parsley.

  4. Add pepper and a ladleful of reserved water from the pasta pan, then stir to reduce the contents of the pan to a smooth cream.
  5. Transfer the spaghetti to the pan with the bottarga sauce. Mix together thoroughly, adding a little more of the pasta water if the mixture appears to be drying out.
  6. Divide the dressed pasta among four warmed plates, sprinkle with the remaining grated bottarga and chopped parsley, and serve immediately.