Mascarpone is a sinfully good cheese that, when fresh, is amazing just by itself, generously slathered on a piece of good bread. In specialty delis in Italy, such as Pecks in Milan or Tamburini in Bologna, it is displayed in decadent swirling mountains, like pristine white-capped peaks after a heavy snowfall. Fresh mascarpone barely lasts two or three days, but the packaged kind that is available in the States has a much longer shelf life and is fine when used in dishes such as this one and desserts. In this dish, where there is no cooking involved, prosciutto and mascarpone are simply mixed together and tossed with hot pasta, allowing their flavors to be the stars.
© 2009 Giuliano Hazan. All rights reserved.