Spicy Arrabbiata Penne
SHARE THIS RECIPE!
© Paden Reich
One of my all-time favorite meals centers around tomatoes. I have several photos on my phone illustrating this point. One shows a fresh harvest of tomatoes from our garden; they’re literally spilling out of bowls onto the kitchen counter. I think this was a message from our wonderful gardener, Carlos. The first year I planted tomato plants, the majority of them died. I went to Carlos, asking for help. I think he felt bad for me, and not only did he bring those plants back to life, he added more and somehow has them producing fruit well into the winter. Another photo shows my arrabiata sauce simmering on the stove, tomatoes quartered and afloat on a sea of luscious sauce full of spices. I swear I can smell the red pepper and garlic through my phone. Fresh tomatoes are a bonus, but obviously canned tomatoes provide the same classic taste. This is an easy dinner when I’m in a hurry, and with a green salad and a creamy dressing to balance the spice, along with fresh bread, you can rely on this as a Monday through Friday staple, as I do, or serve it for a casual Saturday night with friends.
1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta, and cook according to the package directions; drain, reserving 1 cup of the cooking water.
2. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high until shimmering. Add the garlic; cook, stirring often, until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes, salt, crushed red pepper, Italian seasoning, and black pepper. Bring to a boil, and cook 5 minutes. Remove from the heat, and stir in the 1/4 cup chopped basil.
3. Stir the cooked pasta and reserved pasta water into the tomato mixture. Garnish with the Parmigiano-Reggiano and additional basil, if desired, and serve warm.
It’s important to generously salt your water. It adds flavor to your pasta. Don’t rinse your pasta after cooking, and don’t drain all the water; save some to flavor your sauce.
1 (1-pound) package uncooked penne rigate
1/4 cup olive oil
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 (26.46-ounce) package chopped tomatoes (such as Pomì)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil, plus more for garnish
Shaved fresh Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, for garnish
Hands on time