Puttanesca Sauce
with Fresh Semolina Pasta

A puttanesca sauce is traditionally made with anchovies, capers, and ripe olives.  This ridiculously easy pasta sauce is said to have been invented by Italian prostitutes and it was designed to lure customers in with its powerful aroma.

Learning to make fresh homemade pasta to go along with your puttanesca sauce will only increase the pleasure that will come with consuming this pasta sauce.  And if you want an authentic Italian pasta, you would use durum wheat or semolina flour. 

Semolina is made from the endosperm of durum which gives this flour a distinctive yellow color.  Durum wheat was developed by artificial selection of the domesticated emmer wheat strains that were grown in Central Europe and the Near East around 7000 BC.

Durum has a high protein content as well as a high gluten content.  And this combination is what gives this particular type of wheat the right properties for making some of the best pasta.  However, if you have problems with wheat you can also learn how to make a great gluten free pasta for your puttanesca sauce.

Homemade Semolina Pasta Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 400 Grams or 2 Heaping Cups of Pure Semolina Flour
  • 4 Large Pastured Eggs
  • Pinch of Fine Sea Salt

Instructions:

  1. Put semolina flour and a pinch of salt into a bowl and make a well in the center of the flour.  Gently whisk the eggs and pour into the well.
  2. Slowly incorporate semolina flour into the eggs using a fork until it comes together as a dough.  Begin to knead the dough.  If it's too sticky, add some "Unbromated" all purpose flour or a fine durum wheat flour to your dough.
  3. Knead the dough by folding and pressing the dough for about 5 minutes or until the dough becomes too tough to knead.
  4. Wrap the smooth and "firm" dough in plastic wrap.  Rest dough for 30 minutes before cutting into 4 to 5 equal parts (save extra wrapped in fridge for a week).
  5. Roll the dough with a rolling pin on a floured board or use a pasta maker (2 times on 0, 2 times on 1, 2 times on 2 - all the way up to 6).
  6. Cut into pasta noodles and dust with a little flour to keep pasta from sticking together.  Cook fresh pasta in boiling salted water for 2 to 3 minutes.

Durum wheat is a tough golden grain and is one of the hardiest of all the wheat varieties.  Semolina is made from the endosperm of durum wheat and the endosperm is at the heart of the wheat kernel.  The endosperm develops about the same time that a seed is fertilized and surrounds the seed to provide nutrition as it develops.

Semolina has a low glycemic index and is rich in nutrients.  It is a good source of vitamin E, B complex vitamins, iron, calcium, magnesium, and zinc.  And it also contains selenium and carotenoids which are anti-oxidants.

Spaghetti Alla Puttanesca Sauce Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 4 Garlic Cloves (sliced)
  • 6 Good Quality Anchovies Fillets (finely minced)
  • Big Pinch Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1/4 cup Organic Capers (rinsed of salt & chopped)
  • 1/4 cup Ripe & Naturally Cured Black Olives (pitted & chopped)
  • 1 cup of Whole Peeled San Marzano Tomatoes (crushed by hand)

Instructions:

  1. Place a 1/2 pound of spaghetti in a saucepan or skillet - cover with hot water.  Add a pinch of salt and cook on high until pasta is shy of al dente (stirring occasionally).
  2. Add olive oil to another saucepan along with garlic, anchovies, and red pepper - cook on medium heat - stirring until garlic is pale golden brown (about 5 minutes).
  3. Then stir in the capers and olives.  Next, add in the crushed tomatoes.  Stir to combine and bring to a simmer. 
  4. Check pasta.  Use tongs to transfer shy of al dente pasta into the sauce.  Toss to coat pasta in puttanesca sauce.
  5. Finish with fresh chopped parsley, drizzle of olive oil, and a little pasta cooking liquid.  And bring to a vigorous boil to create a creamy sauce. 
  6. Plate and top with high quality grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese which is authentic Italian parmesan cheese.

Traditionally, this sauce is served with spaghetti, but it can also be served with other types of pasta.

Gluten Free Fresh Pasta Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 200 Grams Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free 1 to 1 Baking Flour
  • Or about 1 Cup
  • 3 Large Pastured Eggs

Instructions:

  1. Put ingredients into a food processor and run machine until a dough forms.  Remove dough from the food processor. 
  2. If dough feels too sticky work 1/4 cup more of flour into the dough while kneading on a floured surface for 2 to 3 minutes.
  3. Wrap dough in plastic and rest a few minutes - cut into 4 equal pieces.
  4.  Flatten down a section of dough and roll thru a pasta machine (starting at the 0 setting and working up to the 3rd setting - run dough twice on each setting).
  5. Then cut pasta into a noodle style and slightly twist while putting fresh pasta onto a floured surface.
  6. To cook pasta, bring water up to a boil and add some salt.  Drop in bunches of the pasta and cook for less than 2 minutes. 
  7. Transfer the cooked pasta directly into the puttanesca sauce and toss gently to coat pasta.  Plate and garnish with herbs or cheese.

Pasta Puttanesca Sauce Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 2 to 4 Tbsp. of Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 Organic Garlic Cloves (thinly sliced)
  • 2 Anchovy Fillets
  • 400 Gram Can Plum Organic Tomatoes (drain)
  • Or Just Under 2 Cups of Tomatoes
  • 30 Grams or 12 to 15 Black Olives (pitted & preferably oil-cured)
  • 1 Tbsp. of Organic Capers
  • Pinch of Dried Red Chili Flakes
  • 200 Grams or 7 oz. of Dried Spaghetti Pasta
  • Small Handful of Italian Flat Leaf Parsley (rough chopped)
  • Optional:  Sea Salt

Instructions:

  1. Heat a large frying pan on medium heat and add a generous amount of olive oil into the pan.  Then add in the garlic to infuse with the olive oil. 
  2. Start cooking your dried pasta in a large pot of boiling water and cook pasta until al dente.
  3. Then put the tomatoes into a bowl and crush them with your hands - set aside.
  4. Stir the anchovies in with the sizzling garlic until dissolved.  Then stir in the olives, capers, and a pinch of red chili flakes.  Stir for a minute.
  5. Add in the crushed tomatoes and give sauce a good stir.   Simmer over medium to medium-high heat for 10 minutes to break down tomatoes.
  6. Turn off the heat.  Transfer your cooked spaghetti into the puttanesca sauce and toss pasta using tongs. 
  7. Add a drizzle of olive oil to the pasta tossed in puttanesca sauce.  Plate garnished with fresh chopped parsley.

I absolutely love the presentation of this puttanesca recipe, but a puttanesca sauce is pretty salty and there is no need for extra salt.

Too lower the salt content of puttanesca, use oil-cured ripe olives which sometimes are lower in salt and soak capers in water (then dry) before using.

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