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How to prepare Tortellini Bolognesi
Step-by-Step Recipe

Prepare broth using my recipe for chicken broth

for the filling:

5 oz (150 gr) pork loin

2 tablespoon butter

5 oz (150 gr) prosciutto

5 oz (150 gr) mortadella

1 large egg or 2 small eggs

pinch of nutmeg

8 oz (225 gr) freshly grated parmigiano reggiano cheese

Makes approximately 300 tortellini


Cut the pork in small dice. In a saucepan on medium heat place the butter. When the butter starts foaming add the diced meat. Sauté and cook the meat until lightly browned.

Transfer the meat to a food processor. Pulse a few times to reduce to a coarse compound.

Add the mortadella and prosciutto to the processor. Run the blade until all the meat is very finely ground.

Transfer the ground meat to a shallow bowl.

Add the egg, and freshly grated nutmeg.

Add the grated parmigiano reggiano.

Combine all ingredients very thoroughly together.

Prepare pasta dough using my pasta dough recipe. Make the dough very soft, using just enough flour to avoid  the dough sticking to the hands while working. Flatten the dough with the rolling pin or machine.

Cut the dough in squares 1-1/2 inch (4 cm)  approximately.

Divide the dough in several pieces. Place one piece on the work surface and set the rest aside. Cover the reserved dough with plastic wrap to prevent it from drying.

Place approximately one teaspoon of the filling in the center of each square.

To form the tortellini:

Take one of the pasta squares.

Fold it in half.

Press on the edges to form a triangle.

Fold the tip of the triangle. Wrap the triangle ....

.... around your index finger.

Close it in a ring shape pressing gently on the pasta to hold its shape.

The recipe will make approximately

300 tortellini, enough for 6 to 8 people.

Place approximately 1-½ quart (1500 cc) of the broth to a boil. When the broth is at a fast boil drop the tortellini.

Cook the tortellini until “al dente” (firm but not too soft or overcooked.)

Cooking time may vary depending on the freshness of the tortellini. Dried tortellini may take a little longer then freshly made tortellini.

Place the tortellini in serving bowls, top with freshly grated parmigiano reggiano cheese, and optionally, with freshly grated nutmeg.

Main Course >> Tortellini

Tortellini are originally from the city of Bologna, in the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy. And every Bolognese would tell you that they resemble the “ombelico” the navel of Venus. There are several legends surrounding the origin of Tortellini and you can read them on Wikipedia. Tortellini are traditionally served only in homemade meat broth. The broth will enhance the taste of the tortellini and make it a superb combination.

My sister Daniela was a particularly talented cook. She had the opportunity to be close to her mother-in-law from the Emilia region of Italy. This way she learned how to prepare perfectly and with special techniques dishes typical of that area. Her tortellini are legendary in our family and actually became a family tradition for us at Christmas time. This recipe follows strictly the best tradition of Bologna cooking. Making Tortellini is elaborate but absolutely worth it. It is one of those traditional preparation requesting respect and dedication. You can involve your friends or family in the Tortellini making (like I do) and it would be a great way to spend some quality time together for the holidays.