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Foglie Ulivo – Olive Leaf Pasta with Olives and Pancetta

Foglie Ulivo Pasta is shaped just like an olive leaf and guess what its name translates to? You got it– Olive Leaf!

Foglie Ulivo Pasta is shaped just like an olive leaf and guess what its name translates to? You got it– Olive Leaf! This traditional handcrafted pasta is from Italy’s southern regions of Puglia and Liguria, two regions famous for their olive oil!

Foglie Ulivo - Olive Leaf Pasta with Olives and Pancetta

These olive leaves are the perfect partners to flavorful pancetta, salty cured olives, and crisp white wine.

Foglie Ulivo - Olive Leaf Pasta with Olives and Pancetta

A few simple pasta dishes in your cooking repertoire makes whipping up a weekday dinner not only easy but also delicious! This recipe certainly fits the bill.

If you missed last week’s simple and tasty pasta recipe, you can find that right here:

Vegetarian and Vegan. Without the pancetta, this dish is vegetarian. If leaving out the pancetta, double the number of black olives. Or saute your favorite mushroom that has been chopped finely.

For a vegan version of this pasta recipe, follow the vegetarian directions and omit the cheeses. To mimic the Parmesan cheese thickening power and saltiness, substitute ground pine nuts. About 4 tablespoons of pine nuts for the parmesan cheese is a good substitute. You can find ground pine nuts in some markets or it’s easy to grind your own with a food processor or a spice grinder. Simply leave off the mozzarella cheese. If you have a vegan version of mozzarella you enjoy, use that. Or top with a few fresh herbs such as basil, parsley, or mint.


The Puglia food tradition is based on foraged foods and peasant traditions leading us to this simple dish of pasta flavored with just 6 ingredients. This is one of those dishes that come together in just a few minutes with really simple ingredients. As with anything that is so simple, each flavor will shine on its own, so be sure to use the best ingredients.

Olives: With a recipe called Olive Leaf Pasta we couldn’t skip bringing the flavors of olives into this dish. A good strong black olive is a great balance to the white wine in this recipe. Our favorite black olive for this dish is the Sweet Balsamic Olives with Orange Blossoms . We found the best way to pit these olives is to run a knife down them lengthwise and then the pit pops right out.

Foglie Ulivo - Olive Leaf Pasta with Olives and Pancetta

Oil. This recipe calls for just one tablespoon of olive oil, but that one tablespoon is tasted throughout the dish, so pick a strong well-flavored oil. We particularly like our Arbequina or even our Robusto blend olive oil in this dish.

Pancetta. Pancetta is salt-cured meat made from pork belly–the same cut of meat used to make bacon. In the market, you’ll find pancetta sliced thinly or cubed. For this recipe, you’ll need the cubed pancetta. It adds depth to this simple dish.

White Wine. White Wine is the foundation for the sauce, so you’ll need a crisp easy-to-drink wine that isn’t sweet. Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, or Chardonnay are all excellent choices.

Cheese. Both Parmesan and Fresh Mozzarella come into play in this recipe. Parmesan cheese thickens the sauce while adding flavor, and mozzarella provides a fresh creaminess.

Pasta. At SpiceTopia, we are proud to offer handcrafted organic pasta from Italy. The foglie ulivo pasta called for in this recipe is one of those pastas! The texture and flavor found in this simple pasta are amazing–if we do say so ourselves!

Foglie Ulivo - Olive Leaf Pasta with Olives and Pancetta


The white wine sauce in this recipe is simple and comes together in the same amount of time it takes to cook the pasta. Drop your pasta in a pot of boiling water. Add the pancetta to your saute pan. Cook for a few minutes, add the wine, cook for another few minutes, drop in the olives and pasta, Turn off the heat. Add the parmesan. Stir. Top with Mozzarella. Serve! Truly a 10-minute dinner!

Difficulty Beginner
Prep Time: 5 min Cook Time: 10 min Rest Time: 5 min Total Time: 20 mins
Best Season Suitable throughout the year
Foglie Ulivo
  • 1 tablespoon Olive oil
  • 6 ounces Pancetta (diced)
  • 1/2 cup Dry white wine
  • ½ cup Black olives (pitted)
  • ¼ cup Parmesan cheese (freshly grated parmesan cheese)
  • 2 ounces Mozzarella (Fresh mozzarella pulled into pieces)
  • 8 ounces Pasta
  1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 5-6 minutes.

  2. Add the olive oil and pancetta to a cold saute pan. Turn on the heat to medium-high. Fry pancetta for 3-4 minutes. Stir often and be careful to not let it burn.

  3. Pour in the wine. It should sizzle. Add the olives and about ¼ cup of water. Allow to cook for about 2 minutes.

  4. Drain the pasta and add directly to the pan with the wine sauce. Remove from the heat. Stir in the parmesan cheese. Add a bit of the pasta water if the pasta looks too dry.

  5. Top with the mozzarella cheese and serve!

Keywords: Easy Recipe, Dinner, Pantry Recipe, pasta, olives, What's for dinner, Healthy Eating, healthy, Comfort Food, cooking from scratch, Cooking tips, vegetarian, Plant-Based
Ventura, California.

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