Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Pasta With Arrabiata Sauce

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This was my my favourite pasta sauce to eat when I was in Italy last year.  When I wasn't gluten-free yet, aka the good old days.

And now, here it is, in my kitchen in Canada, on gluten-free pasta.  But I have to say, the quinoa/corn blend pasta that I use tastes fairly identical to wheat pasta, and this sauce recipe tastes fairly identical to what I became slightly obsessed with in Italy.  I hear that Costco, my favourite store in the world, is now selling a gigantic bag of quinoa/corn blend pasta...looking forward to my visit there this weekend!  Woo.

'Arrabiata.'  It means 'angry' in Italian, and the reason for the sauce being labelled with this name is because of the spice of the red pepper flakes.  At the restaurants that I ate at in Italy, Arrabiata meant a spicy red sauce with chunks of pancetta in it.  Back home, it seems to just mean a spicy red sauce, and an Amatricana sauce is the one that has the pancetta chunks.  I was happy when I stumbled across this Giada de Laurentiis recipe for Arrabiata sauce from my copy of her Everyday Pasta cookbook, because it combined both the spice of the red pepper flakes and the pancetta like I remembered.

You have the option of making the Marinara Sauce used in this recipe from scratch (Giada's recipe also), or just buying store-bought.  I chose to make it from scratch because I was feeling very domesticated, and I was glad I did because the recipe made a lot of sauce and now my freezer is nicely stalked for the next time that I want to make the full-blown Arrabiata Sauce.

This sauce is so delicious in its simplicity.  It really reminds me of Italy where it was all about the simple flavours and few ingredients.  And the pizza and the risotto and the pizza and the bellinis and the pizza and the wine too.

Any favourite pasta sauce recipes out there that you want to share?


Pasta With Arrabiata Sauce

Makes:  About 5 cups

  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 6 oz pancetta, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 5 cups marinara sauce (store-bought or homemade - see recipe it!  make it at home!)
Heat the olive oil in a large soup pot over medium heat.  Add the pancetta and saute until golden brown, about 5 minutes.  Add the red pepper flakes and garlic, and saute until tender, about 1 minute.  Add the marinara sauce and bring to a simmer, then remove from the heat and serve on top of your favourite pasta shape.  This is sooooo good!

Recipe Source:  Everyday Pasta by Giada De Laurentiis

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