SPAGHETTI ALLA PUTTANESCA
Salty anchovies, fiery chillies, pungent garlic and piquant capers add big bold flavours to this gorgeous (but strictly adult) Italian tomato sauce. Don’t skimp on the chilli flakes – this sauce needs plenty of heat!
Prep: 10 minutes Cook: 15 minutes Serves: 4 - 6
- 3 Tbsp (45 ml) extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for topping
- 4 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
- 2 Tbsp (30 ml) tomato paste
- 4 anchovy fillets, chopped
- 2 x 400 g tins chopped tomatoes
- 1 cup (250 ml) black olives, pitted
- 3 Tbsp (45 ml) capers, drained
- 1½ tsp (7.5 ml) dried chilli flakes
- freshly ground black pepper
- 1 x 500 g pack Pasta Grandé Spaghetti
- 1 tsp (5 ml) salt
- 4 litres water
- ½ cup (125 ml) chopped flat-leaf parsley
- Heat the olive oil in a pan over a low heat and gently fry the garlic for a minute, without letting it brown.
- Add the tomato paste and anchovies and cook over a low heat for another minute, mashing the anchovies with the back of a fork so they begin to dissolve.
- Now add the tinned tomatoes, olives, capers and chilli flakes. Simmer over a medium heat for 10 minutes, or until the sauce has darkened and slightly thickened. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- In the meantime, bring the water and salt to a fast boil in a large pot. Add all the pasta in one go and stir to separate the pieces. Briefly cover the pot with a lid until the water comes back to a rapid boil. Cook, uncovered, stirring now and then, for 6-8 minutes, or until just tender (al dente).
- Drain the pasta using a colander, reserving a third of a cup of the boiling water.
- Tip the pasta back into the pot you boiled it in and add the reserved water, which will prevent it sticking together.
- Pour the sauce over the pasta, and toss gently to combine.
- Serve immediately, topped chopped fresh parsley and a drizzle of extra olive oil.
• Don’t be put off by the anchovies in this recipe – they’re essential in this classic dish, and once they’ve dissolved they won’t taste at all fishy
• Season sparingly with salt, because the anchovies are already salty.
Spaghetti Alla Puttanesca
Don’t be put off by the anchovies in this recipe – they’re essential in this classic dish, and once they’ve dissolved they won’t taste at all fishy.