Spaghetti alla Carrettiera (alla Romana)

This recipe for Spaghetti alla Carrettiera (alla Romana) is the fruit of a collab with our amica Isabel, better known by her art name @leftburner. She expertly wove together dried porcini mushrooms, Corbarino tomatoes, and bluefin tuna buzzonaglia into a dish bursting with complex, umami flavors. Tuna and mushrooms are a match made in heaven and this recipe proves it.

“Alla carrettiera” means “in the style of cart drivers”. It refers to a mix and match of shelf-stable ingredients these carrettieri had stowed away in their carts at any given time, and could easily whip up into a delicious pasta sauce. Using preserved ingredients such as tuna, tomatoes, and dried mushrooms is not only a traditional move, it does add a more complex depth of flavor. To quote Isabel, “this recipe is much more powerful in flavor due to the specific dehydrated Borgotaro porcini and Testa tuna.”

Spaghetti alla Carrettiera is the definition of a Gustiamo pantry recipe, grazie Leftburner! We can’t wait to see what dreamy recipes you’re planning to cook next.




  1. Place dried mushrooms in a bowl and cover with warm water. Soak for 30 minutes.
  2. Transfer the mushrooms from the liquid onto paper towels and strain the porcini broth into a cup. You will use 3/4 cup of liquid later on (freeze the rest).
  3. Roughly chop up the mushrooms.
  4. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a stainless steel frying pan on medium-low heat.
  5. Add the minced shallot and sauté until soft (around 3 minutes).
  6. Add in the mushrooms and season with a pinch of salt. Sauté around 5 – 7 minutes, add more olive oil if needed. Don’t worry if they stick to the pan, they will release as you cook the sauce. Transfer mushrooms to a plate or bowl.
  7. Add in a bit more olive oil to the pan and return to a medium-low heat.
  8. Add in the garlic and sauté for 3 minutes or until the garlic has turned golden.
  9. Carefully add in the tomatoes and 3/4 cup of the strained porcini broth. If you want to plate with whole tomatoes, now is the time to pull out 4-5. Season with chili, minced caperberries, salt and pepper. Let the sauce simmer for at least 10 minutes or until it thickens. After 10 minutes add the mushrooms and drained tuna. Stir to incorporate and lower the heat. I prefer to keep some of the tuna in larger chucks.
  10. Bring a large pot or dutch oven filled with water to a boil and salt generously. Add in the dried pasta and cook till al dente (about 8 minutes).
  11. Drain the pasta, reserving 1/4 cup pasta water. Return pasta to the dutch oven or large pot. Remove the garlic cloves and transfer the tomato sauce to the spaghetti, adding the 1/4 cup pasta water and oil from the tuna jar (I used around five tbsps). Toss over very low heat.
  12. Finish with parsley and some more oil from the tuna jar.

spaghetti alla carriettiera corbarino tomatoes porcini buzzonaglia bluefin tuna