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Sicilian baked anelletti timballo
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5 from 24 votes

Baked Sicilian Anelletti Timballo

A delicious and impressive looking baked pasta dish from Sicily, which will wow your guests!
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time1 hr 30 mins
Total Time2 hrs
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian, Sicilian, Southern Italian
Keyword: anelletti, baked pasta recipe, ragu, Sicilian food, timballo
Servings: 6
Author: Jacqueline De Bono


For the meat sauce (ragu)

  • 400 g minced beef and pork or veal mix (14oz)
  • 1/2 glass red wine
  • 150 g peas (5oz)
  • 2-3 carrots
  • 2-3 celery stalk
  • 1 medium sized onion peeled
  • 3 garlic cloves peeled
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 handful basil leaves
  • 350 g tomato passata rustica (12oz)
  • salt and pepper to taste

For the Timballo

  • 400 g anelletti (14 oz)
  • breadcrumbs as required
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 50 g grated parmesan (2oz) grana or pecorino
  • 150 g cooked ham (5oz) cut into cubes
  • 150 g Caciocavallo or Primo sale cheese (5oz) cut into cubes


  • First make the meat sauce.
  • Chop the carrot, onion, garlic and celery finely. Fry the vegetables in olive oil until they start to soften. Be careful not to let them to burn!
  • Add the minced meat and cook until browned. Add the glass of red wine and stir well
  • When the wine has evaporated pour in the passata and mix it in well with the meat. Add the fresh basil and salt and pepper as required.
  • Cover the sauce and allow to simmer on a low heat for at least an hour, stirring occasionally so it doesn't stick. If it gets too thick add some water.
  • 10 minutes before the sauce is cooked, add the peas.

While the sauce is cooking you can get on with the rest of the dish.

  • Put water on to boil for the pasta. Add salt once it starts to boil. Cook the pasta 2-3 minutes less than instructed on the packet. Drain and add the anelletti to the meat sauce when it is ready. Mix the pasta and sauce well and allow to cool.
  • Grease the sides and base of a deep cake tin with olive oil (I use a spring form tin which makes getting the timballo out easier!)
  • Line the sides and base of the tin with breadcrumbs.
  • Once the pasta and meat mixture has cooled spoon a thick layer into the base of the tin.
  • Make another layer from the chopped ham and caciocavallo cheese and finish off with another thick layer of the pasta and meat sauce.
  • Press the mixture down and cover the top with more breadcrumbs and grated parmesan cheese.
  • Cook the timballo at 200 degrees in a preheated oven for 25-30 minutes.
  • When it is ready, allow to cool for 15 minutes before inverting it onto a serving plate and removing the tin.