Spaghetti alla Puttanesca which means “Spaghetti in Harlot’s Sauce” in Italian. This famous tomato sauce of Naples is a variation of the marinara sauce. It contains items found in most kitchens, and can be varied to suit one’s taste. It is quick and easy, and most importantly– it is delicious. The first time I tasted it was at a small restaurant in Naples, close to the harbor. I asked for the recipe and was told there was no such thing. The owner did tell me some of the ingredients and here is my version.
1 pound thin spaghetti
3 T olive oil
3 garlic cloves, chopped
2 cups canned, crushed Italian tomatoes,
or 3 ripe tomatoes, peeled, chopped and seeded
1 ½ T capers, drained
12 pitted black olives cut in half
1 small hot chili pepper
6 anchovies, chopped
1 tsp fresh oregano
2 T chopped parsley
Fresh ground pepper
Bring 6 quarts of water to a boil, add 2 T salt. Cook for 9 minutes or until “al dente”– done but firm.
Heat the oil in large saucepan, cook garlic until soft. Remove the garlic, add tomatoes, capers, olives and chili pepper. Cook until sauce has thickened, about 10 minutes.
Add anchovies, oregano, parsley and pepper to taste.
When sauce is done you can remove chili pepper, or chop it and add to sauce. You can also add the garlic. The ingredients can be doubled, it is all up to your taste.