Home-made Tortello Pasta Recipe Filled with Aubergine, in Tomato Sauce and Smoked Goats Cheese

Nina Matthew-Branda and Salvatore Branda are the husband-and-wife team of chefs who are responsible for the Italian experience at La Sosta restaurant in Swellendam. They shared one of their recipes with us for you to recreate at home if you’re unable to get to their restaurant anytime soon.

You also might like: Pasta with Creamy Walnut Pesto

Home-made Tortello Pasta Recipe Filled with AubergineHome-made tortello pasta recipe from La Sosta

Serves 4


  • 300g flour
  • 1 large free-range egg
  • 3 large free-range egg yolks

Pasta Filling

  • 3 medium-size aubergines
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • bunch thyme
  • salt
  • olive oil

Tomato Sauce

  • 1 tin strained tomato purée (passata di pomodoro)
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • olive oil
  • sprig of basil
  • aged, smoked goats cheese (or any medium/hard smoked cheese)


  1. Start with the pasta by combining the flour, the egg and the egg yolks in a standing mixer or by hand until smooth. Cover and leave to rest for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Using a pasta machine or by hand, roll the pasta out to about a 2mm thickness. Using a cookie cutter of 5cm diameter, cut out 25-30 disks. Cover and set aside.
  3. To make the filling, preheat the oven to 180˚C. Wrap the aubergines with some garlic, thyme, salt and olive oil in foil and cook in the oven for 1 hour.
  4. Remove from the oven and while still hot, cut open, scrape out the flesh and chop until it is a smooth paste.
  5. Put the aubergine into a cheese cloth and strain to remove as much excess water as possible. Season the aubergine filling to taste.
  6. Use the pre-cut pasta disks, add a small amount of the aubergine filling into the middle of the disk and and fold into tortello shape, and cook in salted, boiling water for 4 minutes.
  7. To make the tomato sauce, cook the garlic and onion on a low heat with some olive oil. When soft and translucent, add the tomato purée and cook on a very low heat for 90 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  8. Top with basil and goats cheese.

Wine suggestion Kleinhoekkloof Merlot Rosé

To see Nina and Salvatore in action, watch as they recreate this recipe below.

Chefs Nina and Salvatore run La Sosta in Swellendam where they serve up delicious Italian fare.

La Sosta

145 Voortrek Street, 6740 Swellendam, Overberg

+ 27 (0) 28 514 1470; [email protected]

Open for dinner only from Tuesday to Sunday from 6:30pm with the last seating at 8pm. Closed from Sunday to Monday.

Recipe supplied and approved by the chefs

Meet last month’s Country Chef Chris Papayannes in this quick fire Q&A.

Photography and Video Daniela Zondagh

Leigh Hermon

A journalist by trade, features writer on occasion and now the digital editor of SA Country Life. The first chance she gets, Leigh will tell you about a podcast she was recently listening to and how you simply have to make the move from radio. In a previous life, she once taught English on Jeju which left her with an insatiable craving for kimchi.

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