Traditionally, puttanesca sauce is served with spaghetti in a dish known for being “in the style of the whore”. Oooh so devilish. There is a tale, saying its origins stem from the word “puttana” which in Italian means whore — why you ask? Well they say it’s so quick and easy. Ooooh dear!
Although there are many myths, the true origins of its name are debatable. One thing’s for certain – it makes an easy, quick, and delicious pasta puttanesca sauce. The ingredients are typical of Southern Italian cuisine: tomatoes, olives, capers and garlic. Its spicy, salty, and savory taste make for a comforting midwinter meal, just add a salad and a loaf of ciabatta and enjoy!
This is definitely one of my favorite pasta dishes and one I make often. My other favorite, is spaghetti with smoked salmon and capers in a white wine sauce. It’s one that I get asked again and again to make. It’s really quick and really easy and simply delicious. Actually, it’s impressive enough for a spontaneous dinner invitation. LITERALLY! The subtle saltiness of capers together with the smoked salmon definitely keep you coming back for more, and more and more! This one too!
Puttanesca: Tuna, Olives and Capers in a Tomato Sauce
- 500 g dried pasta of your choice
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 680 g glass jar organic passata Italian tomatoes (pureed tomato)
- 2 shallots, finely chopped
- 3 or more garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 1 can good-quality sustainable tuna, drained
- 1 tablespoon capers rinsed, roughly chopped
- 1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives, roughly chopped
- 1/2 cup dry red wine
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes or to taste
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- handful fresh chopped parsley
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- freshly grated parmesan, to taste
- In a large skillet, sauté garlic and diced shallots in olive oil over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until soft but without coloring.
- Add olives, capers, red pepper flakes and red wine and cook until reduced by half.
- Stir in the pureed tomatoes, tuna, oregano and allow to simmer for at least 20 minutes. If necessary, add a little water to adjust the consistency of the sauce.
- Meanwhile, fill the large pot with cold water and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil over high heat and add pasta, stirring occasionally to prevent the pasta from sticking. Cook according to packet instructions, until al dente.
- Toss sauce with fresh parsley and pasta.
- Season sauce with freshly ground pepper, according to taste. Garnish with parmesan before serving. Enjoy!
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