Pasta Puttanesca and Simple Salad

By Jennifer

Pasta Puttanesca

This comes together quickly and is delicious;  even better with a glass of good Chianti.  I tossed baby Romaine with good olive oil and balsamic vinegar for the side.  An easy way to chop garlic is to first smash the clove using the side of a knife and your fist (be sure to place the garlic clove on it’s flat side so it doesn’t skitter out);  then you can easily remove the skin and chop away.

This recipe is adapted from Gourmet magazine

  • 1 lb. spaghetti
  • 5 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp anchovy paste
  • 1/2 tsp red-pepper flakes
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper (or, a decent number of turns of the pepper mill)
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 28-oz. can whole tomatoes in juice, preferably Italian
  • 1/2 cup pitted Kalamata olives, coarsely chopped
  • 2 TBS rinsed and drained capers
  • 3/4 cup chopped basil

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil;  cook pasta until al dente, according to package directions.

Tomatoes in the blender

Meanwhile, puree the tomatoes and their juice in a blender.

Garlic skin comes off easily

Smashing garlic

Garlic, anchovy paste, spices in oil

Heat the olive oil in a wide skillet over medium-high heat and add the garlic, anchovy paste, red-pepper flakes, salt and pepper.  Stir occasionally until the garlic is fragrant;

Pureed tomatoes, olives and capers in the pan

add the pureed tomatoes, olives and capers.  Lower heat to a simmer (medium-low) and let cook until pasta is finished.  Drain pasta;  return to pot.  Add sauce and toss well.  Serve with basil sprinkled on top.

Pasta Puttanesca is served

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