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Old 06-30-2018, 04:53 PM
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Default Penne alla vodka

This is from the Frugal Gourmet Cooks Italian cookbook.



The recipe uses a "mother" sauce so I will give that recipe first. It makes a lot. We freeze it flat in quart bags and store. It's a very simple, basic, mild tomato sauce that can be used for multiple purposes and seasoned accordingly. With that said, if we don't have any frozen, we'll use 2 cans of diced tomatoes (preferably fire roasted) and make a quick but similar sauce. It's better with the long cooking sauce, but still good with the quickie.



Fresh Sicilian Sauce
1/4 cup olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
9 cups cored and chopped very ripe fresh tomatoes (I use plums when they go on sale)
Four 28-ounce cans whole tomatoes, crushed, with juice
1 cup chicken stock
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried rosemary
6 Tbsp butter
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


Place the oil and onions in a heavy 8-10 quart pot. Saute until the onion is almost clear, add the garlic and continue to saute until onion is clear. Add remaining ingredients EXCEPT butter, salt and pepper. Cook uncovered for about 4 hours at a gentle simmer, stirring often. Stir in the butter and salt and pepper to taste. You can puree with an immersion blender or in a countertop blender if desired.



Penne alla vodka


3/4 cup 1/4-inch dice pancetta
1 Tbsp olive oil (may not need)

1 medium onion, thinly sliced or chopped (I chop, it's less messy to eat)
2 cloves garlic, mined fine
1/4 to 3/4 tsp red pepper flakes to your taste

1/2 cup dry white wine
1 cup whipping cream
1-1/2 cups Fresh Sicilian Sauce
1/4 cup grated Parmigiano + more for garnish if desired

salt and pepper to taste
1 pound dry pasta
1/2 cup (or more to taste) vodka, use something like Smirnoff, you don't want to use an expensive vodka, but don't use rotgut either


Start a big pot of water for the pasta.



In a medium-size frying pan over medium heat, saute the pancetta until fat renders and it starts to get some golden brown color on it. Remove from pan using slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Add the onions and olive oil only if there is not enough rendered pancetta fat, saute until almost tender, there should still be a little crunch. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon and drain with the pancetta. Add the garlic and the red pepper flakes to the pan and oil if needed, and saute for about 30 seconds. Add the wine and simmer for about 2 minutes. Add the tomato sauce and the cream, stir to mix thoroughly, add the onions and pancetta, then simmer for 10-15 minutes to meld flavors. Add the pasta to the pot with some salt right after you combine everything above so it can cook while the sauce simmers. Stir in cheese and let melt, stirring constantly. Just before serving, add the vodka and mix. Mix the sauce and pasta (see note) and let it meld for a minute or two. Any longer and the vodka will cook out. Serve with additional grated cheese if desired.



NOTE: I cook the whole box of pasta but I don't usually use quite all of it. I add nearly all the pasta to the sauce, reserving about 1 to 1-1/2 cups, mix and then decide whether or not to add additional pasta.
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Old 06-30-2018, 05:01 PM
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Default Re: Penne alla vodka

Thank you Med.
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