Penne Filetto di Pomodoro

Filetto di Pomodoro, with prosciutto and onion, is a rustic and hearty tomato sauce that goes great over penne or your favorite pasta shape.

Penne Filetto di Pomodoro

Filetto di Pomodoro is the first of my Dad’s recipes from the restaurant that I learned to cook well. I worked as a waiter at the restaurant and didn’t have my passion for cooking yet, only eating 🙂 . It wasn’t until after I got my first apartment that I decided I needed to learn how to cook for myself. Filetto di Pomodoro was my favorite pasta dish at the time, so it was the first one I asked him to teach me. Hence, I really need to credit this recipe with sparking that love of cooking that has grown so much over the years.

Penne Filietto di Pomodoro with Parmgiano

Filetto di Pomodoro means tomato fillet, but i don’t take the tomatoes and literally cut them into fillets, I just crush them coarsely with my hands, leaving bigger chunks of tomato for a rustic effect. I have mentioned this before, but you should always try to find authentic San Marzano tomatoes. They should be stamped with DOP, which indicates authenticity. If you can’t find San Marzano at least make sure that they are imported from Italy, and you may have to try out a few different brands to find ones you like.

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Penne Filetto di Pomodoro

Penne Filetto di Pomodoro Recipe

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4.4 from 5 reviews

  • Total Time: 40 mins
  • Yield: 4-6 1x


  • 2 tblsp of olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1/8 of a pound Prosciutto di Parma, chopped
  • 1 28 oz can of imported Italian tomatoes, preferably San Marzano
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 2 basil leaves, torn into pieces
  • 1 pound of penne pasta
  • freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese for serving


  1. Heat olive oil in large saute pan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until it starts to soften, about 5 minutes. Then add the prosciutto and cook until onion is translucent and prosciutto is browned.
  2. Crush tomatoes very coarsely and add with juices to onion and prosciutto mixture.
  3. Season with salt and pepper, then fill tomato can half way with water and pour the water into the pan.
  4. Cook 15 to 20 minutes, until sauce thickens. At the very end stir in the basil.
  5. While the sauce is cooking, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add 1 tablespoon of salt and the penne. Cook uncovered over high heat until al dente.
  6. Drain pasta, put back in pot add some of the sauce to the pot and mix it up. Dish out pasta spooning remaining sauce over top. Serve with freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano on the side for sprinkling.
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 30 mins

9 Responses

  1. Wow, this looks delicious! Great idea on crushing them instead of cutting them. I think it brings out the flavor more that way. ^_^

    Thanks for sharing this recipe!

  2. I’ve got a bit of talent in the kitchen – at least my family and friends think so, and I can state unequivocally that this recipe is equal or better than some that take 3 times as long and have 3 times the ingredient list. This is one of those recipes that makes everyone look like an awesome chef.

    Yes, it only takes 40 minutes (tops).

    Do bother to get San Marzano tomatoes, not some crappy imitation – they’re worth the expense.

    I’ve been tempted to add some garlic, but so far have avoided messing with something that needs no messing with.

  3. DON’T make the same mistake I did…this recipe does not need added water. I should have known better. It’s way too watery.

  4. Hi,From a study of canned Italian tomatoes,DOP,Which I read from one of those tested studies of many brands,It found the marca,REGA, pomodoro San Marzano dell’Agro Sarnese -Nocerino to be the best.Indeed after using innumerable brands fo more than sixty years, I too found the tomato very ,very wholesome and with no dense yellow center. I bought a six can order of 28 oz. each at a cost of approx imately five dollars per can..from Amazon..well worth it than the organic etc ones that range two-fifty to three or four each.Hope this helps.

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