Al Bronzo Penne

With Cream of Caramelized Onions, Parmigiano Cheese & Fresh Thyme

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This Al Bronzo Penne pasta recipe features a versatile and highly customizable ingredient: onion. The red onion in this recipe is caramelized in frothy butter along with aromatics such as bay leaf and thyme. The saltiness of the cheese enhances the sweetness of the onion. This treatment of ingredients and flavors are inspired by the French classic, soupe à l’oignon (onion soup).

Barilla Al Bronzo Penne Rigate pasta is made by extruding dough through a bronze die that is micro engraved. This gives the pasta a rougher texture, allowing pasta sauces to perfectly adhere to our beautifully crafted pasta.

Ingredients 7 Servings


  • 1 box Barilla® Al Bronzo™ Penne Rigate pasta
  • 1 large red onion, julienned
  • 6 tablespoons apple vinegar
  • 3 ½ tablespoons white vinegar
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 8 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 2/3 cup heavy cream
  • ½ cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme
  • Salt and pepper to taste
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  • Onion sauce: In a saucepan add 2 tablespoons butter, onion and bay leaf; sauté for 5 minutes. Add apple and white vinegar, season with pepper. Reduce almost completely.

  • Add remaining butter, cream, and cheese to the resulting onions. Heat and blend well using an immersion blender (hand blender).

  • Cook pasta according to package directions and drain.  Toss pasta briefly in the onion cream and plate without piling up the penne. 
  • Finish with a few thyme leaves and, if you like, a few pieces of onion cooked in the vinegar for a few minutes, as shown in the photo.
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