Late Night Pasta Anyone?

Named after Italian ‘ladies of the night,’ Pasta Puttanesca was a quick throw-together of simple ingredients restaurants would still have on hand when the ladies would be finished working. I like to make a double batch and freeze some – it’s the perfect dead of winter easy and delicious meal. 

Pasta Puttanesca Recipe

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Yield: Serves 6

Pasta Puttanesca Recipe


4 Tablespoons olive oil

1 Tablespoon anchovy paste - don't leave this out!

2 large cloves garlic, minced

28 ounce can Italian tomatoes, chopped

1 Tablespoon capers

5 ounces Kalamata olives, coarsely chopped

1/2-1 teaspoon crushed red pepper

1 pound of your favorite pasta, fresh or dried

Fresh grated Parmesan for serving


  1. Heat olive oil in a pan over medium heat.
  2. Add anchovy paste and garlic - sauté for about one minute.
  3. Add tomatoes, capers, olives and red pepper - simmer on low heat 15 to 30 minutes. As it simmers, use the back of a spoon to break up the tomatoes - you want the sauce thick and chunky.
  4. Serve over pasta and top with fresh Parmesan.
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Sam Zien

is host of the TV show Sam the Cooking Guy, author of 3 cookbooks and a frequent guest in the Today Show kitchen. He’s also and proud of his “big in taste but small in effort” cooking style — “food that anyone can make,” he likes to say.

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