Spaghetti alla Puttanesca
There are quite a few stories about how this dish originated. One is that prostitutes around Rome carried all of the ingredients with them (as they didn’t need to be kept cool) so they could cook up the sauce on an open fire on the street. Although this is disputed – many claim Sandro Petti invented it in the 1950’s as he had nothing but these ingredients left in his restaurant to feed a table of hungry punters. To me, it doesn’t matter. It’s a great dish that will get the taste buds hopping and the forehead sweating! I have seen recipes with similar quantities to serve 4. I don’t think there is enough sauce and it becomes too plain when cooked this way. I prefer this method.
2 tbsp Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
2 cloves of Garlic (finely chopped)
6-8 fillets of Anchovies in Oil (finely chopped)
1 dried Red Chilli (finely chopped)
90g pitted Black Olives (finely chopped)
1 heaped tbsp Salted Capers (rinsed)
300g Cherry Tomatoes (halved)
1 tsp Dried Oregano
120g Dried Spaghetti
Sea Salt and Freshly Ground Pepper
1. Saute the garlic, anchovies and chilli in the oil over a medium heat for 3-4 minutes. Add the olives, capers, tomatoes and oregano and season with pepper (don’t add salt!). Cover the pan with a lid and cook for 15-20 minutes, removing the lid for the final 5 minutes to thicken the sauce slightly. Check for seasoning.
2. Meanwhile cook the spaghetti in salted boiling water until al dente (about 1 minute less than packet instructions). Drain, reserving the cooking water. Add the drained spaghetti to the sauce and mix well. Add a couple of tablespoons of the reserved pasta water if it’s a little dry. Serve.