Uruguayan Pasta With Caruso Sauce

Pasta rigatoni

Bartosz Luczak / Getty Images

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 25 mins
Total: 35 mins
Servings: 4 to 6 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
348 Calories
16g Fat
37g Carbs
15g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4 to 6
Amount per serving
Calories 348
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 16g 20%
Saturated Fat 7g 36%
Cholesterol 34mg 11%
Sodium 848mg 37%
Total Carbohydrate 37g 13%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Total Sugars 7g
Protein 15g
Vitamin C 3mg 16%
Calcium 201mg 15%
Iron 2mg 10%
Potassium 341mg 7%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This famous Uruguayan pasta sauce is named after Enrico Caruso, a well-known opera singer who visited Montevideo in the early 20th century. Italian food (especially pasta) is very popular in Uruguay, but Uruguayans like to add their own touch to traditional Italian dishes—like the beef broth to this creamy ham and cheese sauce. The result is delicious and goes well with orecchiette or any medium shell pasta.


  • 1 pound pasta, orecchiette or another shell-like shape

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 large onion, chopped

  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms

  • 1/4 pound smoked deli ham, chopped

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

  • 1 tablespoon beef bouillon, about 3 cubes, or to taste

  • 2 cups milk, or cream

  • 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

  • Parsley, for garnish

Steps to Make It

  1. In a heavy skillet, sauté chopped onion in the olive oil until soft and fragrant, about 5 minutes.

  2. Add sliced mushrooms and cook, stirring, until mushrooms have browned and most of the water is evaporated. Stir in ham and set aside.

  3. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta according to package directions.

  4. While pasta is cooking, melt butter in a saucepan. Whisk in flour. Cook over medium heat until just bubbly.

  5. Add milk slowly to the saucepan, stirring. Add bouillon. Continue to heat milk, stirring with a whisk, until sauce thickens and just starts to come to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in cheeses. Stir in sautéed mushrooms and onions.

  6. Drain pasta well. Ladle sauce over pasta and serve.