12 Reviews

Spent three years eating my way through Naples, Italy, so I'm a quasi pasta snob--not in a bad way, just spoiled by knowing how the natives whup up a pot of pasta and sauce and how so much texture and flavor often gets lost in translation on this side of Mare Atlantico (Mi scusi, my Italian isn't what it used to be). We used to go frequently to a small restaurant outside of Naples where we were as frequently treated to the owner's own pot of puttanesca or marinara, homemade wine and that awesome, crusty, rustic bread, almost leathery on the outside and soft and lucsious on the inside, so perfect for sopping up every last bit of sauce. Our Italian friends laughed the first time I did that. Scarpetta, they called it, (Which I recall roughly translated means to scrape the shoe.) Only later did I learn that this is fairly decent compliment to the cook. Okay, basta. Enough already. This recipe is that primo scarpetta moment all over again. Simple preparation and awesome flavor. We modified it as follows, to make up for an understocked pantry. Serendipitous for us as the plate, we agreed, was a dead ringer for so many of those meals we enjoyed with our Italian hosts that have really set the standard for our expectation of what pasta and sauce should be. Used: Kalamata olives vice oil cured. Concentrated crushed tomatoes vice chunky style Anchovy paste vice canned Tbl of dried parsley vice fresh. (I stubbornly almost left the parsley out entirely since I couldn't find fresh flat leaf.) If you can find it, try this meal with a bottle of Marchesini Montepulciano D'Abruzzo. This is one of the only times I'll recommend a specific wine, but this wine is simple and sumptuous and incredibly inexpensive. I came across it in an article on decent cheap wines in the Atlanta Constitution a few years ago. Made a note of it and keep it in my PDA.

3 people found this helpful. Was it helpful to you? [Yes] [No]
Weber Guy March 01, 2006

This is phenomenal! One of the recipes I wanted to review, so I joined the site... Following the review of Weber Guy, I made some changes based on what I had available... kalamata olives, anchovy paste, dried parsley, and I crushed some extra canned tomatoes for the sauce rather than having a can of crushed. Only other real change was using some green olives as well as kalamata. That said, this was wonderful, and stunk up the house like I opened a restaurant in the kitchen!

1 person found this helpful. Was it helpful to you? [Yes] [No]
Queen Roachie December 03, 2008

So good! I didn't plan on making this, so I had to use 2 cans of the diced and a can of sauce. Thanks! Will make it again.

1 person found this helpful. Was it helpful to you? [Yes] [No]
AmberRiot August 02, 2008

Absolutely fabulous. The tartness of the capers and saltiness of the kalamata olives perfectly complement the garlic infused tomato sauce. Substituted basil for parsley and used rigatoni for the noodles. Next time will add a few more olives. Love it! Thanks for posting.

1 person found this helpful. Was it helpful to you? [Yes] [No]
Vicki in CT September 09, 2007

This is a nice sauce. A welcome change from a jar of spaghetti sauce. However, if you have teenage boys that are like mine, don't bother. Their palates just aren't very appreciative. It goes without saying this has a much fresher taste than jarred. It's salty, but not overbearing, and the red pepper flakes give you just the tiniest little tingle on the tail end of the bite. Will probably make this again, but on a night when the boys are elsewhere. :)

1 person found this helpful. Was it helpful to you? [Yes] [No]
Kay D. March 09, 2006

I've never made anything like this before - it was wonderful! Thanks Lane!

0 people found this helpful. Was it helpful to you? [Yes] [No]
Lacer April 17, 2010

This is the one! When I saw the ingredients I knew it would be good but it was fantastic! Thanks so much for posting this recipe Lane! It's going into my recipe file.

0 people found this helpful. Was it helpful to you? [Yes] [No]
Sharon in Podunk January 21, 2010

I made this last night and it was a Hit. I used my own to tomato sauce but added the other ingredients; the flavour is Wow! I am saving this one.Thanks for posting. Sage/Rita

0 people found this helpful. Was it helpful to you? [Yes] [No]
Sage November 21, 2007

I made this recipe exactly as written. The results were fantastic! Excellent sauce! I am thinking how good this sauce would be served over chcken breast or fish fillets---YUM!

0 people found this helpful. Was it helpful to you? [Yes] [No]
Richard-NYC July 27, 2007

Ciò è semplicemente eccezionale! The larder was getting pretty bare here at the beach -but had all except I used Kalamata olives (pitted with my trusty cherry pitter of 20 yrs -used to put up cherries in Montana) & 28 ounce can tomato strips with basil. This stays on the to-do list when we are thinking of pasta from now on! Thank you for this bello recipe Lane!

0 people found this helpful. Was it helpful to you? [Yes] [No]
Buster's friend December 05, 2006
Pasta Puttanesca