Fusilli alla Napoletana

Preparation info

  • Serves


    • Difficulty


Appears in

The Mediterranean Kitchen

By Joyce Goldstein

Published 1998

  • About

This pasta is a surprise. The little cubes of mozzarella melt in the sauce and form strings like telephone cords (al telefono). It’s not only tasty but also fun to eat.


  • ¼ pound pancetta, sliced ¼ inch thick and cut into ½-inch-wide strips
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, cut into ¼-inch cubes
  • 2 medium carrots, cut into ¼-inch cubes
  • 1 rib celery, cut into ¼-inch cubes
  • Salt
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • cups Tomato Sauce
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 6 ounces fusilli
  • ¼ pound fresh mozzarella cheese, cut into ½-inch cubes
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons (or more to taste) freshly grated Parmesan cheese


    Sauté the pancetta in 1 tablespoon olive oil until most of the fat is rendered and the pancetta is cooked through but not browned. Remove the pancetta with a slotted spoon and discard the fat.

    Add the remaining olive oil to the skillet and heat over medium heat. Add the onion, carrots, and celery; cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 10 minutes.

    Meanwhile, heat a large pot of salted water to boiling.

    Add the garlic, tomato sauce, and pancetta to the vegetables. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Heat the sauce through and keep warm.

    Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook until al dente. Drain and transfer to a pasta bowl. Add the mozzarella to the sauce and pour it over the pasta. Quickly toss to combine. Sprinkle with the parsley and Parmesan. Serve at once.