Friday, July 21, 2006

Capers & Spaghetti Puttanesca

It’s time for Kalyn’s (of Kalyn's Kitchen) Weekend Herb Blogging, which is hosted this week by another favorite food blogger of mine – Paz of The Cooking Adventures of Chef Paz. Yesterday I came across a recipe someone gave me that came from one of Jamie Oliver’s cookbooks (I’m not sure which one, because it was handwritten)…Spaghetti Puttanesca – don’t you just love the name?! I’ve never actually made it before because no one in my family is a fan of anchovies and I only recently discovered capers with a vengeance. But last night I was on my own for dinner, and since I stumbled across this recipe I felt it was Kismet.

But first, what the heck are capers anyway? Are they a plant, an animal, do they live on land or in the sea? Hmmm, well according to Wikipedia.org ....
“a Caper (Capparis spinosa L.) is a biennial spiny shrub that bears rounded,rather fleshy leaves and big pinkish-white flowers. Native to the Greek archipelagos, it grows wild on walls or in rocky coastal areas throughout the Mediterranean region. It is best known for its edible buds and fruit which are usually consumed pickled.”
Of course I’ve seen them sprinkled over gravlox (smoked salmon), but that’s about it, until I discovered a number of Donna Hay recipes (particularly some of her pastas) that included this little, but pungent bud.

But back to my Spaghetti Puttanesca…lots of Kalamata olives, anchovies and capers make this a very salty sauce, but you don’t need a lot to give the pasta flavor. I used multigrain spaghetti, because I’m watching the type of carbs I eat now that I’m following
theSouth Beach Diet (at least Phase 2) and it was delicious.

Of course, even though I cut the recipe in half, there’s enough left over for an army, so for breakfast we’ll be having a Puttanesca frittata. I can’t wait.


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11 comments:

Kalyn said...

I LOVE capers, so I'm guessing I'd love this. I actually do like anchovies, although I haven't cooked with them much. Do you buy them in a can? I'll have to look for some.

Ruth said...

Kalyn, you CAN buy anchovies in a can, but I suggest you find ones sold in a jar. That way you don't have to worry about using them all up right away.

For this recipe, you only need 12 little anchovies - and you know the expression about being packed like sardines...even the smallest tin holds way more than that.

Thanks for dropping by.

Paz said...

Oh, yum! I've tried Rachel Ray's version of Spahghetti Puttanesca but yours is different and I'd like to try it too. BTW, if I were at your house, you could make this for me or anything with anchovies. I don't mind them at all. Nothing wrong with them to me. ;-)

Thanks for the lesson on capers!

Paz

P.S. By the way do you know what 'puttanesca' means? ;-)

Ruth said...

Paz, I actually should have known what Puttanesca means, because it's a very similar word in French - I grew up in Montreal, Quebec...lady of the evening would be the most polite term....

Thanks for reminding me. I must admit puttanesca sounds alot more magical.

Thanks for dropping by

Cyndi said...

Ruth, I posted about capers this week, too! (Great minds... : ) )

funwithyourfood said...

I would like this with angel hair. It's my favorite pasta

teddy

sher said...

I love that dish!!! And anchovies are a wonderful thing--they add so much flavor and if you don't tell people they are in the dish--they just think the meal is extra special!

gattina said...

Ruth,
I think I can eat your spaghetti everyday! Kalamata olive, anchoviesand capers... I can't think of any other better than them!!!

Sara said...

i avoided capers for years, but now i love them. how did your frittata turn out?

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

I finally received Joan Nathan's "Jewish Cooking In America" and I'm very happy to have bought that great book! I love it! Thanks for the recommendation...

Ruth said...

Everyone, thanks for dropping by. Glad to see so many of you share my enthusiasm for the dish.

And Sara, the frittata was awesome. So much wonderful saltiness.

Rosa, glad you like the book. It's one of my favorites. It's my first choice around the holidays. Enjoy!!