Mar 6, 2012

Spaghetti alla Puttanesca!

Hehehe. I just love it when I can give such fancy names to my dishes, especially if I don’t have to work at creating such fancy names… ;-)
Imagine the flavours of olives, capers, garlic and smoked tomatoes in your mouth. Now imagine a meal out of these. Yes, it is that yummm…

Pair it with some red wine, and enjoy!
I never made Pasta Puttanesca before, though I’ve eaten it back when I wasn’t making pastas at home. [Call me a snob or whatever, after I learnt making my own pastas, and dish out my own sauces, I almost stopped eating pasta at Italian restaurants. :-D ]

So when Aruna sent us[myself, Sangee, and Priya] , this link, all of us were in love, with the pics, the idea of Puttanesca and the imaginary taste of it in our mouths. And that is where it started for me, the Puttanesca research.
Wiki tells me, its called Whore’s pasta, and I now know why ;-). It has to be the blatant burst of flavours in your mouth, and and the unashamed love you feel for the pasta afterwards. ;-)

All recipes I found online tell me that Puttanesca has anchovies, but I obviously wanted to omit them. Besides being fish, they have a story attached to us, myself and the husband. The story took place in a Spanish restaurant in Hong Kong, where we were living at the moment, and its quite long, the story, not our stay there. Lets just say, that it didn’t end well, and the husband had a sour face for an entire week. Lets also just say that since then, I’ve taken very good care to not get ingredients mixed up in my head (like artichokes for anchovies etc) and have always asked the waiter if the dish we ordered is indeed vegetarian or not, instead of acting like a know-it-all. :-)

I also read some different varieties of recipes for Puttanesca online, but I decided to go with the one Aruna sent, the PioneerWoman’s. I added capers to the dish though, and I omitted fresh basil, because I was lazy, and didn’t get to the store in time, and because I wasn’t in a mood to use pesto for this one. Also, as it always is the case when I am using tomatoes, I used smoked tomatoes for this one also. You can use regular chopped tomatoes or cherry tomatoes instead of this.

Note: The quantities in the ingredients below will make two servings of sauce for two people, only one of which you’ll need to use with your fistful of spaghetti.
Recipe inspired by Pioneer Woman

Spaghetti – a fistful, cooked al dente per instructions on the box

Red onions – 2 medium sized, Diced thin
Tomatoes – 6 medium sized, smoked, skin peeled, and coarsely chopped
Garlic cloves – 6, finely chopped
Olives – 1/2 Cup
Capers – 1/4 Cup
Oregano – 1/2 Tbsp
Red chilli flakes – 1/2 Tbsp
Salt – To taste
Extra virgin olive oil – 2Tbsp
Fresh Basil leaves – if using, for garnish
Feta or Parmesan cheese – if using, for garnish
Mash the garlic, olives and capers together, and put it aside.
In a pan, saute the onions in olive oil till golden brown, and add the chopped tomatoes , red chilli flakes and oregano to this, and mix well. Now add the garlic mash to this, and let this cook till the sauce reduces. Add salt.
At this point, you can reserve some sauce , depending on how much spaghetti you are using, for later use.
Toss the remaining spaghetti with the sauce, and mix well.
Serve hot.

1 comment:

  1. Neat! Rachel ray and Giada also have some nice Puttanesca sauces and what a name eh? :-))

    I don't do oregano always, but we alter regular storebought sauce and desi-fy it to one spice mix :-D

    Will try capers. Never have before..


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