Pasta Puttanesca

Originally posted May 19th, 2007, provided by Tim Adamec

Pasta Puttanesca is an easy, classic Italian dish. The Puttanesca sauce can also be used on anything from chicken to vegetables to fish.


Quantity Ingredient
2-4 cups Cooked Pasta (bow-ties, angel hair, etc.)
Appx. 1 tbsp. Olive Oil
1-4 cloves Garlic, finely chopped
1 14-oz can Chopped tomatoes
1 handful kalamata olives, pitted
1 tbsp. Capers
1-3 Anchovy filets, diced
1 Lemon, juiced
pinch Dried chili flakes to taste
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste.


Start by heating the olive oil in a non-reactive skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic when the oil starts to shimmer and cook until it softens (30 seconds to 2 minutes); do not burn or it will be bitter.

Reduce the heat to medium-low and add the tomatoes, including the juice. Simmer for about 15 minutes, or until the juice is reduced by 1/3 to 1/2.

While the tomatoes are cooking, take the olives and pit them by lightly smashing them with the side of a knife or bottom of a pot and squirting the pits out.

When the tomatoes are done, add the olives, capers, lemon juice, anchovies and chili flakes and heat through. Taste and adjust salt, pepper and chili flakes as needed; the olives, capers and anchovies are salty so taste before adjusting.

Add cooked and drained pasta to the pan and toss to heat.

Serve with freshly grated Parmesan or Romano cheese, if desired.

Tips & Tricks

Due to the acidity of the tomatoes and lemon juice, cast iron cookware should not be used in this dish.

Pitting the olives, while not strictly necessary, is recommended by four out of five Dentists!


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