I detest all my sins, except…Pasta Puttanesca


Translated literally as “whore’s spaghetti”, this adaptation of a traditional Neapolitan recipe is a cheap, spicy dish originally intended for quick preparation.

1 lb. pasta, cooked al denté
1 lb. fresh ripe plum tomatoes, peeled (or canned)
12-18 black oil cured olives, pitted
8 flat anchovy fillets, coarsely chopped
1 tbsp. butter
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 large sweet onion, chopped
1/2 tsp. dried basil
8 large or 12 small basil leaves for garnish
1/4 tsp. dried oregano
4-5 large cloves garlic, minced
pinch of red hot pepper flakes
1 tbsp. fresh Italian parsley (flat not curly), minced
1/2 lb. fresh mushrooms
salt and pepper, to taste
Prosciutto, pancetta OR lean salt pork* (if all three, call a cardiac physician immediately)

This sauce is prepared more quickly if all the ingredients are coarsely chopped in a food processor, but this may also be done by hand.

Sauté chopped onion in olive oil in butter until lightly colored. Add whole cloves of garlic and sauté until lightly golden and soft; mash the garlic into the olive oil using a fork.  If using prosciutto or other pork, add now and simmer sauce 5 minutes longer

Add chopped ingredients (except parsley and mushrooms) and simmer over medium low heat for 10 to 15 minutes. Add the parsley and mushrooms halfway through the cooking.  Use fresh basil for garnish.

*Note: At the same time as mushrooms are added, taste the sauce. A little salt and pepper, lemon juice, red wine or balsamic vinegar, Marsala or other red wine, herbs such as rosemary, basil, oregano or thyme, or a little granulated garlic may be added, to your taste.

                     Pasta Puttanesca

This is always best with Linguine or Spaghetti, but actually works really well with Rigatoni.

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