Sunday, March 1, 2015

Pasta with vodka tomato sauce - when simple food tastes great

Pasta with vodka tomato sauce / Farfalle com molho de tomate e vodca

Years ago I saw this pasta sauce on many blogs, some of them my favorites and I had all the intention of making it, but for some reason I never did and it ended up slipping my mind.

I thought of it days ago when I bought a bottle of vodka to make a new batch of vanilla extract and wrote the idea down to avoid forgetting it all over again. The original recipe calls for shallots, but there was a leek in my fridge begging to be used and I added it instead.

I’m not sure if it was the leek, the vodka, the cream or the three of them together, but this turned out to be one of the tastiest tomato sauces I’ve ever made – seriously good. It is flavorsome, creamy without being heavy and slightly peppery, not to mention simple to make.

I had no idea this sauce would turn out so delicious when I set out to make it and now I strongly recommend you try it, too.

Pasta with vodka tomato sauce
slightly adapted from this book and from Rachel Ray

1 tablespoon unsalted butter
½ tablespoon olive oil
1 small leek, white part only
1 fat garlic clove, minced
pinch of red pepper flakes
½ cup (120ml) vodka
1 can (400g/16oz) chopped canned tomatoes
2 teaspoons sugar
salt and freshly ground black pepper
225g (8oz) dried short pasta, such as farfalle or penne
¼ cup (60ml) heavy cream
handful fresh basil leaves, shredded or torn
grated parmesan cheese, to serve

Heat a medium saucepan over moderate-high heat. Add butter and oil and while the butter melts, slice the leek in half lengthwise, then cut both halves in thin slices. Add to the saucepan and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent. Add the garlic and pepper flakes and cook until fragrant. Gradually pour in the vodka, stir then cook until reduced by half, 3-4 minutes. Add tomatoes, sugar, season with salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer and cook partially covered until thickened, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

While sauce simmers, cook pasta in salted boiling water until cooked to al dente.

Stir cream into sauce, cook for 5 minutes, stir in the basil and remove from the heat. Drain pasta and toss it with the sauce. Serve immediately sprinkled with the cheese.

Serves 2


Laura (Tutti Dolci) said...

Simple pasta is the best and I love vodka sauce, what a great dish!

Marise said...

I think I will try it, leaving the garlic and leek to someone else lol

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