Monday, December 14, 2009

A pasta putanesca recipe

Some say there is a curious story how pasta putanesca got its name. What I find more curiouser is how from its lowly past it got to be  a sosi fare. Anyway, I learned this recipe from a kumare. My friends like it very much and many ask for the recipe. So here it is.

1 kilo tomatoes
1/2 kilo pasta (spaghetti or fettucine)
1 cup capers
2 1/2 cups sliced black olives
4 cloves garlic
1 small onion
olive oil
5-6 tbsps anchovies sauce (bagoong balayan)
grated cheese
1 tin can salted anchovies (optional)
parsley (optional)
chili flakes (optional)

Boil water in a sauce pan. Put in the tomatoes in the boiling water. When the water boils again, remove tomatoes put them immediately in ice water.

Peel the tomatoes. Slice tomatoes in half and deseed them softly (like squeezing kalamansi). Strain the juice and seeds. You will use the juice later. Dice the tomatoes thinly.

Slice the onion. Chop the garlic thinly.

Put 4-5 tbsps. olive oil in the pan. In low heat, put in the onions and cook it for around 5 minutes or until it starts to get brown. Put in the garlic. Cook until light brown. Add chili for a little flavorful kick.

Put in the bagoong balayan. Here is where you play it by taste. Use less if you also add salted anchovies. Use more if you want a saltier sauce.

Put in the 2-3 tbsp of pesto. Again, play it by taste. Use more if you want a stronger aroma.

Add in the tomatoes and the juice. Still in low heat, let it boil for a minute. Then add in the olives. Wait another minute. Add in the capers. Then remove from heat.

Cook the pasta according to package instructions.

Pour the sauce into the pasta. Top with grated cheese and parsley.

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