Pasta Puttanesca (a.k.a Slutty Pasta)

Now that I’m the mother of two young girls, I try to embrace the most innocent aspects of Halloween; the sweet girly costumes, the pumpkin crafts and the candy.  I know a time will come after the Jessie the Cowgirls and the Disney Princesses that girls their age will start to wear the “Slutty ____” costumes for Halloween.  (Slutty Nurse, Slutty Policewoman, Slutty Astronaut).  Hopefully, this will happen in college, when I’m not around to see it.

In the meantime, to fill the slutty void, we ate “Slutty Pasta” before Trick-or-Treating last night.  I really think Puttanesca has a bad reputation.  It’s supposedly named after Italian ladies of the night because of its ease to prepare (I assume after a hard night’s work).  I’ve always loved it because it’s the most savory, salty, spicy pasta on most menus and we almost always have the ingredients in the pantry.  I especially love it with shrimp, but last night I used a can of good tuna packed in olive oil.

Trick-or-Treating went fairly well.  We live in New Jersey and are so grateful for electricity. There was only one downside.  Not ONE Bit-O-Honey in my girl’s buckets.  Or pennies for that matter.

– Catherine

Pasta Puttanesca

1 large onion, quartered and thinly sliced

2 cloves of garlic, chopped

1 28-ounce can whole tomatoes

1/2 cup pitted Kalamata olives, roughly chopped

1/4 cup capers, drained and rinsed

1 7-ounce can good tuna, packed in olive oil (or 1/2 lb shrimp or 1/2 can of anchovies*)

1 lb pasta, preferably spaghetti (although I used penne last night)

Sauté the onion in about 1/2 cup of olive oil over medium heat until translucent, about 5 minutes.  Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant.  Add the olives, capers and canned tomatoes with their juice and simmer for 10-15 minutes.  Use wooden spoon or a potato masher to roughly crush the tomatoes.  Add the tuna and continue to cook and stir over medium heat until tuna is heated through and incorporated.  Drain pasta and add to sauce and toss to combine.

*If using anchovies, add them before the onion and cook until they disintegrate in the hot oil before continuing.

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