Friday, June 28, 2013

The Difference between Tagliatelle and Fettuccine

I've decide to learn a bit more about shapes and names of different types of pasta and ended up with this question:

"What is the difference between tagliatelle and fettuccine?"

Soon, I came up with this answer.

"No difference."

"The two terms are used in different parts of Italy. Both are made by flattening the dough very thinly, rolled up and cut into very thin strips. Usually (but not always, again it depends on what part of the country one is from) one speaks of tagliatelle when cooking the noodles in broth and fettuccine when cooking them in water and then a condiment is added. One more thing, tagliatelle ribbons are generally narrower than fettuccine.

Well, in Bosnia they call the same type of pasta "pilav". It's quite interesting because ''pilav'' means cooked rice in Turkish and the Bosnian adopted the word from Turkish language during the Ottoman era but I have only rough guesses about how the word has evolved in time to mean a very specific type of pasta. Here in Sarajevo, you can find pilav/tagliatelle/fettuccine (since they all refer to the same thing) in grocery shops, supermarkets, markets and even in the streets where locals sell home-made food and drinks. 

Anyway, I made some pilav/tagliatelle/fettuccine topped with minced meat and wild garlic and it was fantastic! I'm not going to give the recipe here, but in order just to give a rough idea about how to make it: I stirred minced beef with some olive oil and when it's done I added a bunch of chopped wild garlic leaves, salt and pepper. It's all you need to do to get this fabulous dish! 


  1. You are wrong

    Togliatelle 5 - 7mm
    Fettuccini 5,9 - 7,8mm

    Size matters, its all about width

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. so from 5.9-7mm they're identical?

  2. Size, sure, matters. However, what about the ingredients and the overall taste from resulting from those? Does width have any effect on that?

  3. I don't really care about it to much if i use tagliatelle or fettucine but i am not Italian. But in Italy there are "official" lengths and widths for each pasta.

    This has a lot to do with the sauce as well, because there is an ideal length and width so it can capture and absorb the sauce in the most ideal way.

    In Italian cooking this is very important. But if you are not Italian and you want to cook yourself a nice home meal i am sure you will not go to hell for it if you use fettuccine instead of tagliatelle.

    1. Thank you for this. I also think that we won't go to hell if we use fettuccine instead of tagliatelle :)