The history of pasta Puttanesca carries many colorful Italian folk tales (Refer to my prior post) This slightly salty, piquant tomato sauce is full of flavors that will certainly pique your culinary senses. Don’t allow the use of anchovies to scare you away—this sauce tastes nothing like fish. Their use simply enhances the delicious tangy flavors. Puttanesca takes less than 5 minutes to put together, but tastes as if it has been simmering for hours. Here’s my Una Pentola version…Bellissima!
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
4 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 15-ounce can chopped tomatoes; San Marzano by choice
1/2 cup Kalamata olives, halved, pitted
4 anchovy fillets, chopped
1 1/2 tablespoons drained capers
1 teaspoon dried oregano or 2 tablespoons fresh; chopped
1 teaspoon dried basil or 2 tablespoons fresh; chiffonade or sliced thin
1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
1/2 pound spaghetti, linguini or angel hair
3 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 1/2 cups water
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
1 teaspoon fresh lemon peel; grated
Grated Parmesan cheese
Heat oil in large pot or skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and red pepper flakes; sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add tomatoes, olives, anchovies, capers, oregano and basil. Simmer sauce over medium-low heat until it starts to thicken breaking up a few tomatoes with spoon, about 5 minutes–this allows flavors of the ingredients to mingle 🙂
Add chicken broth, water and 1 teaspoon of salt to the mixture. Bring to a full boil and add uncooked pasta. Turn heat to low and simmer according to package directions, stirring occasionally. Simmer a few more minutes and add a little more broth or water if you prefer your pasta less al dente. As the liquid reduces in the skillet, a sauce will form. Add lemon peel and toss. Transfer to a medium size pasta bowl or divide among 2-4 dishes. Top with grated or shaved parmesan, additional chopped basil or parsley and a few grinds of fresh pepper.
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