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Pasta Puttanesca

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Serves 4-6

This is the perfect dish to use up some of that pasta lying around in your cabinets before Passover. I am embarrassed to think of how much pasta I consume in a year because of this dish. Do not even think of leaving out the anchovies. They “melt” in the olive oil, become nutty flavored and add a depth that would be sorely missed. This is a pantry dish. By that, I mean you should have everything on hand (except the parsley) in your cabinets and can put this dish together in under thirty minutes.

1 lb of pasta (I love the texture of Percatelli or Bucattini, they are large, thick spaghetti types of pasta shapes with grooves to hold the sauce)

Extra virgin olive oil

5 cloves fresh garlic, thinly sliced

8 filets of anchovies (packed in olive oil), lightly chopped

½ teaspoon dried crushed chilies (or to taste)

¼ cup capers

½ cup kalamata olives (pitted and sliced)

1 8-ounce can of diced tomatoes

4 ounces of canned tomato puree

¼ cup chopped flat leaf parsley

Salt and pepper

¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese (optional)

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook the pasta until it is al dente, about 7-9 minutes (I like it very toothy!)
  2. Place a large sauté pan over medium heat. Lightly coat the pan with extra virgin olive oil. Add the garlic, anchovies and chili flakes. Stir until the anchovies break up and almost melt (about 2 minutes). Be careful not to brown the garlic. Add the canned tomatoes and the puree. Stir to combine. Add the capers and olives. Cook for 5 minutes to combine the flavors. Add the parsley and salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Before serving, add the cooked pasta to the hot sauce and toss together. Place in a large serving bowl and garnish with additional chopped parsley, tasty extra virgin olive oil and grated Parmesan cheese (optional).
Laura Frankel is an Executive Chef at Wolfgang Puck Kosher Catering and author of numerous kosher cookbooks including Jewish Cooking for All Seasons and Jewish Slow Cooker Recipes. To purchase her books, click here. For more articles by Laura, click here.
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