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Best Chitarra Pasta with Lamb Ragu

Print Recipe
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Resting Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 50 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 689


  • 3 cups semolina flour plus more for kneading and dusting
  • 4 whole eggs
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • 1 ½ Tbsp kosher salt
  • 1 Tbsp water
  • Pinch of saffron threads optional
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion finely chopped
  • 2 ounces diced pancetta or guanciale
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 1 pound ground lamb
  • ½ cup dry red wine
  • 15 ounce can diced tomatoes with liquid
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1-2 pinches sea salt to taste
  • Grated pecorino cheese for serving


  • All ingredients ready? Let's begin!
  • Place the flour in a mound on a clean work surface. Make a well in the center of the flour. Crack the eggs into the well. Add the salt, water, and saffron (if using). Using a fork, whisk the eggs together. While still whisking, slowly incorporate the surrounding flour until the mixture becomes wet and starts to come together into a ball.
  • Using your hands, keep bringing the flour and wet ingredients together until you can knead the dough with the heels of your hands. Knead for at least 5 minutes until the dough is no longer sticky and it starts to bounce back. You can dust with more flour if needed.
  • Wrap the dough in plastic film and allow it to rest for at least 30 minutes while you make the ragu.
  • In a large skillet over low heat, warm the olive oil. Sauté the onion, pancetta, and garlic until the onion is translucent, approximately 5 minutes or more.
  • Add the lamb to the skillet and cook until it is browned, breaking it up with a wooden spoon.
  • Turn the heat up to medium and add the wine. Allow it to simmer to reduce slightly. Stir in the tomatoes with juice and the chicken stock.
  • Turn the heat back down and allow the sauce to simmer, covered, for approximately 35 minutes while you cut and cook the pasta. Check the ragu periodically and add a little water if needed. Season to taste with salt.
  • Cut the ball of pasta dough into 4 equal portions. Roll out the pasta into thin sheets with a rolling pin or pasta rolling machine to about ⅛-inch thickness. Let the pasta sheets rest for a few minutes to dry out a little before cutting.
  • Lightly dust the chitarra strings with flour. Place a sheet of pasta on top of the strings of the chitarra and roll with a rolling pin to cut into the noodles. Dust the cut noodles with flour and remove them from the box of the chitarra, shaking off any excess flour.
  • Transfer to a floured sheet pan while you continue to cut the rest of the sheets of pasta. Alternatively, use your pasta machine or attachment to roll the sheets into spaghetti or linguini.
  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Season the water with 1 ½ tablespoons of kosher salt.
  • Cook the pasta for about 3 minutes until al dente.
  • Remove ⅓ cup of pasta water and add it to the ragu. Drain the pasta and toss it into the ragu to coat evenly.
  • Serve immediately with plenty of pecorino cheese on top.



Calories: 689kcal | Carbohydrates: 68g | Protein: 30g | Fat: 30g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 14g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 172mg | Sodium: 2215mg | Potassium: 588mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 246IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 73mg | Iron: 6mg