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LADY OF THE NIGHT’S PASTA – MY VERSION OF A PUTTANESCA
Extract from the book Life on a Table by Antoinette de Chavonnes Vrugt
In Italy this dish is known as the “lady of the night’s pasta”. It is the easiest, tastiest pasta and it is literally just the contents of a few tins and jars that you add together. I guess the “ladies” didn’t have much time for cooking. It was also the first dish that my cousin Frank cooked for me. I always cook a big pot of this pasta on New Year’s morning to help settle the indulgence from the previous night.
30 ml olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 x 45 g tin anchovies, with oil
125 ml black Kalamata olives, pitted
15 ml capers
2 x 400 g tins tomatoes, chopped
15 ml tomato paste
5 ml dried basil leaves
1 chilli (optional), chopped
Salt and ground black pepper
Pinch of sugar
500 g penne
50 g grated Parmesan
Heat the oil, add the onion, garlic and anchovies.
Cook over low heat, stirring for 5-7 minutes or until the anchovies form a soft pulp.
Add the black olives and capers and stir for another minute or so.
Add the tomatoes, basil, sugar, salt and pepper to taste.
Stir well and bring to the boil, then lower the heat and cover the pan.
Simmer gently for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, bring salted water to the boil and cook the pasta al dente.
Stir the cooked penne into the sauce and serve with grated Parmesan.
Life on a Table can be purchased from Venture Media offices at 1 Mozart Street, Windhoek West, Namibia. To order a book email email@example.com or phone 061 420 514.