Spaghetti ala Puttanesca


Revised by author on 12/30/2013

Spaghetti ala Puttanesca

Spicy and garlicky, infused with anchovies! My kind of spaghetti…

Spaghetti ala Puttanesca

Spaghetti ala Puttanesca

Spaghetti ala Puttanesca

Recently I stumbled upon a description of this dish in a book, called Belong to Me by Marisa de los Santos, that I checked out from the library on a whim. (Yes, though I have an Amazon Prime and a tablet, I still check out books from public library. I also still prefer books than e-books.) Anyway, one of the characters in this novel ( a book that has nothing to do with cooking by the way) described and raved about the dish in such a beautiful way that it made me hungry. Immediately! And that name, Spaghetti ala Puttanesca, the Whore’s Style Spaghetti? Wild! How could I resist the urge to try a dish with such a scandalous title?

In no time, I found tons of recipes for the dish online. I made mine using Nigella Lawson’s. This recipe had me at jalapeño. Here’s my adapted version. I liked it even more with the following revisions!

  • I used 12 10 instead of eight marinated anchovies (usually come in a tin or a jar)
  • I used five fresh jalapeno peppers (chopped) instead of pickled and chili flakes
  • I chopped five fresh tomatoes (instead of mixing them with canned tomato sauce) two heirloom and mix them with a small can (8 oz) of tomato sauce (not dice tomatoes or tomato paste)
  • Two tablespoon of olive oil
  • Two tablespoon of capers (drained and rinsed)
  • Three tablespoon of (roughly) chopped black olives Forgot to buy black olives so I went without
  • Five garlic (chopped) Four
  • A handful of parsley (chopped)

(Serves 3-4 people)


  • Boil the pasta. Add a little bit of salt and olive oil into the water. Follow the instruction on the packaging.
  • Mix anchovies, jalapeño peppers, and garlic in a food processor then cook it with olive oil on a heated medium pot for two or three minutes.
  • Add chopped tomatoes, capers, and tomato sauce into the pot. Stir to mix everything together and let it cook for 10-15 minutes.
  • Heat up a large pan, add olive oil, garlic, chopped tomatoes, and anchovies. Mix them well. Add jalapeno peppers, black olives, and capers. Cover the pan with a lid and let it cook for 10–15 minutes
  • Drain the pasta, mix with the sauce, and add parsley
  • Serve and eat up!

Another easy and delicious recipe to keep.

Thanks for reading. Hope your week is going well!

Sources of inspiration for this blog entry:

Marisa de los Santos’ Belong to Me (pg. 44)

Nigella Lawson’s recipe: Slut’s Spaghetti

Easy Pasta for Dinner: Mushroom Bourguignon


Feeling like pasta for dinner tonight? Something with mushroom and vegetables in red wine and tomato sauce?

Try this easy and delicious Mushroom Bourguignon recipe. Yes, I did put the word “easy” and “bourguignon” on the same sentence. This recipe offers a much shorter cook time than Ina Garten’s version I had tried a while back. I haven’t worked out the courage to attempt to do Julia Child’s. Maybe someday. But for now, I am happy to have found another good recipe suitable for everyday dinner. Hope you like it too!

Note: I did a couple of minor adjustments to the Mushroom Bourguignon’s recipe:

  • I used Shiitake mushroom instead of the Portobello or Cremini called by the recipe
  • I also added some meatballs to the pasta dish (optional)

Mushroom Bourguignon

Original recipe by Deb Perelman of Smitten Kitchen