Baked Pasta Roses with stracchino cheese and ham.

Baked pasta roses

 I nidi di rondine romagnoli (swallow’s nests).

A few days ago, I was searching for a recipe for ‘pasta al forno’ (baked pasta). I wanted to find something traditional, yet a little unusual, and since I have started to make more homemade pasta, I wanted to make the pasta myself. (go straight to recipe)

Baked pasta roses

A unique baked pasta recipe.

Anyway, I came across a recipe for baked pasta roses that begged to be tried. This recipe is a version of a traditional dish in Emilia-Romagna. which is sometimes called pasta roses or, more commonly, ‘Nidi di Rodine’, meaning swallows’ nests. The recipe for swallows’ nests is almost the same as this except they often use fontina cheese or mozzarella and may add tomato passata and sometimes mushrooms. Next time round I’m going to make it like that!

Baked pasta roses

This baked pasta roses recipe was a winner! My final result (the roses) didn’t look quite as artistic as the photos I saw online, but the taste was superb and the men in my life loved it. The recipe called for sheets of homemade pasta like lasagne, about 40 x 15-20 cm. (In Italy, lasagne is the name of the pasta and lasagna is what they call the finished dish). I actually managed to make great pasta sheets myself (hurrah!) even though they were longer than specified in the recipe. However, you can use ready made fresh lasagne sheets. Then just roll the ingredients inside them and cut each rolled sheet into two or three pieces.If you’d like to make the pasta yourself, check out my post for homemade lasagne pasta sheets.

Baked pasta roses

Baked pasta roses can also be made with dry lasagne sheets, of course. But, in that case, the pasta needs to be partially cooked in boiling salted water and then cooled under cold water before continuing with making the roses.

Baked pasta roses

Which cheese to use for baked pasta roses?

This recipe uses stracchino cheese. Also called crescenza, stracchino, can be found in Italian speciality shops. It is a type of cow’s milk cheese, typical of Lombardy, Piedmont, Veneto and Liguria. It is normally eaten very young and has a very soft, creamy texture and a mild and delicate flavour. In USA, stracchino can be bought from iGourmet. However, if you can’t find stracchino you can also use mascarpone, edam, gouda or mozzarella or fontina as is often done in Emilia-Romagna. Whichever type of cheese you chose to use, I’m sure you’ll be happy with the result!

Baked pasta roses


If you do make this or any other Pasta Project recipe, please let me know how it turns out. You can comment here on the blog or on The Pasta Project Facebook page. I’d love to hear from you!

Buon appetito!

(see the recipe on page 2)

Baked pasta roses

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  • Beth
    November 11, 2017 7:33 pm

    What a unique recipe! My family would love these,as well! I wish we had all of the lovely cheeses you have in Italy! I think I’m afraid to make the pasta, though! 🙂

    • admin
      November 12, 2017 8:11 pm

      Thanks so much Beth! Yes we’re spoilt for choice for cheese here in Italy but you can use other cheeses such as mozzarella, ricotta or even gouda. Anything that melts well. The first time I made this I used store bought lasagna sheets and it turned out well. Although homemade is obviously quite special! I hope you’ll give it a try! All the best from Verona!

  • Michelle ~ pineneedlesinmysalad
    November 8, 2017 6:05 pm

    This baked pasta has me drooling! Wow! What a beautiful presentation and unique way to prepare the pasta. I love the ingredients in this recipe. Thank you for sharing.

    • admin
      November 10, 2017 9:24 am

      Grazie cara Michelle, Yes! this is a fabulous alternative to baked lasagna. It looks so beautiful and tastes pretty fab too! I hope you’ll give it a try! All the best from Verona!

  • Laura
    November 8, 2017 4:16 pm

    Ah, you found my favourite cheese, I wouldn’t replace with any other. Delicious recipe indeed and well done for you first homemade pasta

    • admin
      November 10, 2017 9:27 am

      Grazie di cuore as the Italians say! One of my favourite cheeses too, although we’re pretty spoilt for choice here in Italy! I love this dish as an alternative to normal baked lasagna! Certainly worth trying! Happy weekend from Verona!

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