Spaghetti Alla Puttanesca

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Spaghetti Alla PuttanescaSpaghetti Alla Puttanesca: Spaghetti alla puttanesca (literally “spaghetti a la whore” in Italian) is a tangy, somewhat salty Italian pasta dish invented in the mid-20th century.The sauce alone is called sugo alla puttanesca in Italian. Traditionally, the sauce is served with spaghetti, although it also goes well with penne, bucatini, linguine and vermicelli.

Ingredients for Spaghetti Alla Puttanesca:

(serves 4):

  • 500 gms spaghetti
  • 400 gms canned chopped tomatoes
  • 150 gms pitted black olives, drained
  • 2 tbsp small capers, rinsed and drained
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 8 anchovies, drained and finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and finely sliced, crushed or grated
  • 1/2tsp dried chilli flakes (or 30ml pickled red jalapeno chilli peppers, drained, sliced and diced)
  • 3 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
  • Salt, to taste
  • Pepper, to taste

Method for Spaghetti Alla Puttanesca:

  • Coarsely chop the pitted black olives.
  • Put water for pasta on to boil.
  • We will work on the sauce while the water for pasta is boiling.
  • Put a wide shallow frying pan or casserole or wok on medium heat.
  • Add 3 tbsp olive oil to it.
  • Add the finely chopped anchovies.
  • Cook for about 3 minutes, pressing and pushing with a wooden spoon, until the anchovies have almost melted.
  • Add the garlic and dried chilli flakes (or sliced then diced jalapeños).
  • Cook for another minute, stirring occasionally.
  • Going back to the sauce, add the tomatoes, olives and capers.
  • Cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Meanwhile, add salt to the boiling pasta water.
  • Add the spaghetti to cook according to packet instructions.
  • Add salt and pepper and taste the sauce for seasoning.
  • Just before the pasta is ready, remove about a cupful of cooking water, and reserve it.
  • Drain and add the cooked spaghetti to the sauce in your wok or pan.
  • Add a little reserved pasta water, if needed, to help amalgamate the sauce.
  • Spaghetti alla puttanesca is ready to be served.
  • Garnish the Spaghetti alla puttanesca with chopped parsley.
  • Serve hot.

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