There are multiple explanations. The first interpretation is that the intense aroma, (harking back to the "stinking" Latin definition), would lure men from the street into the local house of ill repute. Thus, the Nepalese harlots were characterized as the sirens of the culinary world. Three additional accounts all hinge on the fact that Puttanesca sauce is easy and quick to make. The first is that the prostitutes made it for themselves to keep the interruption of their business to a minimum. The second is that they made it for the men awaiting their turn at the brothel. And the final version is that it was a favorite of married women who wished to limit their time in the kitchen so that they may visit their paramour
Whatever is the origin, Puttanesca is a tasty and vibrant sauce. I like it best with pasta , especially during Lent weeks, where we try cut on eating protein and substitute instead on eating healthy vegetables and seafood diet.
This sauce is also perfect on roasted chicken. In Lebanon when I got this recipe from a friend I tried to experiment with more flavours, and I was into spicy and aromatic flavours and one day I added one tbsp of curry powder to the sauce, and suddenly you are on the other side of the world. Whatever is your taste…? Use your imagination and experiment adding and decreasing the ingredients to your taste.
Here is the original recipe served with linguine pasta.
- 1 Onion, chopped (I used green onion)
- 3 Garlic cloves, chopped
- 1/4 cup Olive oil
- 2 Anchovy fillets, finely sliced (optional)
- 3 cup Tomato sauce - (used fresh sliced tomato)
- 2 tablespoons Capers, drained and chopped
- 1/3 cup Oil-packed black olives, drained, pitted and halved
- 2 tablespoons Fresh oregano, chopped
- 1/2 cup Fresh parsley, chopped (leave some for decoration)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- In a saucepan over medium heat, soften the onion and garlic in the oil. Add the anchovies and stir for 1 minute. Add the tomato sauce. Simmer for 15 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients. Toss with cooked pasta. Serve immediately.
Note:You can add tomato sauce instead, the cooking time will be around 5 minutes instead.