Spaghetti alla Puttanesca

Spaghetti alla Puttanesca

 Serves:  6-8


4 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

6 cloves garlic, minced (We eat a lot of garlic in my home!!! If you’re not crazy about a lot of garlic, just use 2-4 cloves.)

2 teaspoons dried red chili flakes (We like it SPICY!)

1 X 2-ounce can of anchovy fillets in olive oil, oil included (omit for specific diets)

14-½  ounce can of petite diced tomatoes, liquids included (You can use regular diced if you can’t find the petite diced.)

6-ounce can of small black olives, drained

2 Tablespoons capers, rinsed

1 Tablespoon of tomato paste

1 pound uncooked spaghetti

1 teaspoon sea salt

2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley 


Bring a large pot of water to a boil.  

Heat the oil at medium-low heat in a large frying pan (My favorite pan is a 12-inch cast iron skillet).  Add the garlic and the dried red chili flakes and sauté for 2-3 minutes until the garlic is soft and tender (this process will release the oils and ‘heat’ within the chili flakes).  Add the anchovies in oil and mash them into the garlic and peppers with a fork until completely incorporated.  Add the tomatoes with liquid, drained olives, rinsed capers, and tomato paste.  Stir well and simmer over moderate heat for approximately 3-5 minutes.  

Meanwhile, add salt to the boiling water and put in the spaghetti.  Stir and cook until the pasta is al dente—reserve 1/4 cup of pasta water.  Drain the pasta.

Pour 1/4  cup reserved pasta water into the sauce until it returns to a simmer (this should happen almost immediately). Turn the drained spaghetti into the sauce.  Raise the heat to a medium setting and heat through for 1-2 minutes, turning the pasta constantly.  Place pasta into a large bowl or serving dish, sprinkle with parsley, and serve.  

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