I’ve never had pasta puttanesca before but for some reason the name stuck in my head so I looked up a few recipes to see what it entailed. Apparently prostitutes used to put this pasta on their window sills to entice men inside…and I can’t blame them! A simple sauce flavored with anchovies, capers, olives and tomatoes…brilliant!
I used heirloom tomatoes from the farmer’s market but next time I’d like to try cherry and roma tomatoes, which are probably a little sweeter.
Pasta Puttanesca (recipe adapted from the New York Times)
- 4 or more cloves garlic, lightly smashed and peeled
- 5 anchovy fillets
- 1 lb chopped fresh tomatoes (or a 28 oz. can drained whole plum tomatoes)
- Freshly ground black pepper & salt to taste
- 1/2 cup pitted black olives, preferably oil-cured
- 2 tablespoons capers
- Crushed red pepper flakes to taste
- 1/2 pound pasta (linguine is traditional)
- 1 fistful of chopped fresh parsley
- Warm olive oil with garlic and anchovies in skillet. Cook, stirring occasionally, until garlic is lightly golden and anchovies are broken down.
- Add tomatoes to skillet, with some salt and pepper. Raise heat to medium-high and cook, stirring occasionally, until tomatoes break down and mixture becomes saucy, about 10 minutes. Stir in olives, capers and red pepper flakes, and continue to simmer.
- Add whatever herbs you may want and adjust seasoning to taste. At the very end, stir in the fresh chopped parsley. Serve sauce tossed with pasta and parmesan cheese.