The background of this dish is spicy to say the least. I’m going to give you G-rated version. (Feel free to Google it if you’d like to know more!) The dish originated in Naples, Italy and was named after the local harlots. It was a hearty, quick & easy meal for them to prepare between “meetings”.
The ingredients tended to be very easy to find, and are typically Mediterranean. You’ll find that like most Italian dishes, recipes may differ according to region & preferences. The sauce is slightly salty due to the anchovies & olives & spicy from hot red peppers. So, no additional salt is needed.
It’s basically a toss in what you have kinda sauce. It’s quick & easy and it full of complex flavors. You can serve it with any type of pasta that you have on hand. If you prefer to use an anchovy paste vs. the actual anchovy fillets, feel free.
Pasta alla Puttanesca
1/3 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 tbsp unsalted butter
1 small tin of Anchovies – chopped
6 Whole Roasted Garlic Cloves
4 Cloves of fresh minced garlic
About a dime size of Red Pepper flakes
8-10 Herb Roasted Tomatoes
12 Calamata Olives – pitted & halved
2.5 Tbsp Capers – drained
About 1/3 cup Fresh Italian Parsley – chopped
About 1 Tbsp Fresh Basil – chopped
Fresh Parmegiano Reggiano Cheese to garnish – grated
Pasta of choice
Prepare your roasted tomatoes (you’ll need to remove the skins once the tomatoes have finished cooking) & roasted garlic according to recipes. When done, heat the oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add the anchovies & garlic cloves. Cook for a few minutes until anchovies are warmed through. Add the red pepper flakes (if you like it spicy, feel free to add more). Cook for about a minute & then add the roasted tomatoes, olives, & capers. Turn heat to low & simmer for 20-25 minutes. Add the minced garlic, parsley (saving a bit to garnish with) basil & butter. Simmer for just a few minutes. About 10 minutes before your sauce is finished, cook your pasta according to package directions. Drain pasta & add to the sauce pan, mix together. Transfer to serving bowl & garnish with remaining parsley & parmigiano reggiano.