Spaghetti alla Puttanesca


  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 4 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 28-ounce can whole tomatoes (San Marzano is best, with basil okay)
  • 1/2 cup drained pitted kalamata olives, halved
  • 3 anchovy fillets, chopped
  • 1.5 tablespoons drained capers
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
  • Salt and pepper
  • 3/4 pound spaghetti
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • Grated Parmesan cheese (optional)


  • Stock pot for pasta
  • Strainer
  • Large serving bowl
  • Slotted pasta spoon
  • Larger saute or sauce pan (or cook sauce in another stock pot and use for serving)


  1. Prep and portion all ingredients. Tomatoes, olives, anchovies, capers, oregano and crushed red pepper can be combined into one bowl.
  2. Bring 16 cups (4 quarts) water to a boil, then add 1.5 tablespoons of salt.
  3. Heat oil in pan over medium heat. Add garlic and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  4. Add the prepped tomato mixture and simmer sauce over medium low until thickened, breaking up the tomatoes with spoon, about 8 minutes.
  5. Add the pasta to the boiling water, stirring immediately to prevent burning to the bottom.
  6. While sauce simmers, cook pasta to al dente. At seven minutes begin tasting, should not take longer than 8 minutes.
  7. Strain pasta over the serving bowl. Dump the water from the serving bowl before returning the drained pasta to it, the water is to warm the serving bowl.
  8. Sprinkle the sauce with salt and pepper to taste, pour over the pasta and toss.
  9. Serve with parsley and cheese.

**notes: I went rustic with larger tomato chunks and parsley. Next time I’ll perhaps try blending the tomato’s with some basil and additional olives before adding to the mixture (I wouldn’t blend the capers or olive halves). I may also try up to two additional anchovy fillets.

All recipes stolen/borrowed from somewhere, butchered/adapted exclusively by CHEF BOY/R/C.