Tagliatelle: a tasteful type of pasta

Tagliatelle is a type of handmade egg pasta typical of Italian cuisine. It owes its name to the “cut” that is made on the puff pastry previously pulled with a rolling pin and rolled up on itself.

It is an Emilian pasta but widespread throughout the peninsula. You could very well apply the word “going country, the custom you find” to tagliatella because in Italy there are so many variations of tagliatelle: in Lazio they are called Fettuccine, in Piedmont they are called Tajarin. But generally they are simply called pappardelle or lasagnette.

The tagliatella however has precise dimensions: in 1972 the Bolognese delegation of the Italian Academy of Cuisine deposited the actual size of the tagliatella at the Chamber of Commerce of Bologna. At the Palazzo della Mercanzia there is a reproduction of a gold tagliatella, that is the perfect noodle prototype.

As established, the tagliatelle must correspond to the 12270th part of the height of the Torre degli Asinelli in Bologna, then about 7mm raw (0.27 inches). The thickness has never been precisely defined, but it is good if it is thin.

It should be enjoyed strictly with Bolognese ragù, tasty and slow-cooked, whose recipe can be read here.

Tagliatelle: a bit of history

It seems that already in ancient Roman times existed a certain type of tagliatelle, the so-called lagane which were already prepared by the Etruscans and the Greeks: they were probably a bit wider like strips and served to create a dish similar to our lasagna, as in Apicius’s recipe . Even Horace, the Roman poet of the famous Latin motto “Carpe diem”, speaks about it in the Satires: “So I go home to my bowl of leeks, chickpeas and lagane”.

In 1891 Pellegrino Artusi wrote: “Short accounts and long noodles, say the Bolognese, and they say well, because long accounts frighten the poor husbands and the short tagliatelle attest to the inexperience of those who made them and, served in this way, seem a leftover kitchen ”.

In 1931 the Bolognese cartoonist and humorist Augusto Majani ennobled pasta, linking its origin to a legend involving Lucrezia Borgia. According to this version, the tagliatelle were invented in 1487 by Mastro Zafirano, during the marriage of Lucrezia Borgia with the Duke of Ferrara, Alfonso d’Este. It seems that the chef took inspiration from her bride’s blond hair. Despite being a very romantic story, we do not know if it is true or not. However, it must be said how, according to some news about some ladies, called the sfogline, they had the task of preparing the dough with which to create lasagna, tortellini and tagliatelle.

The tagliatella should be enjoyed strictly with meat sauce, as we have already told in a previous article.

Tagliatelle: recipe


400 grams of 00 flour

4 medium egg

4 pinch of salt


Preparing time 20 min

Cooking time 3/5 min

Serves 4



First of all, put the flour in the shape of a pyramid and make a hole in the centre, add a pinch of salt and put the egg in the middle.

Begin to work the egg with a fork and slowly add the flour, once the ingredients are blended,

knead the dough for 10 minutes, roll and cut. 

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Put water in a pot and add a handful of salt. Once the water boils, throw the homemade pasta and wait until it rises to the surface. After that, drain and put your chosen sauce (Carbonara, Ragù alla bolognese, Alfredo, Cacio e pepe, Amatriciana, etc…)

Homemade pasta is always tasty, fettuccine or tagliatelle! So… enjoy your homemade pasta and call it as you prefer!

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