Tag Archives: spaghetti

Poor Man’s Spaghetti




Last night, I made Spaghetti Poveri (or Poor Man’s Spaghetti) for dinner and it was DELICIOUS! I’m not sure why they actually named it “Poor Man’s Spaghetti” but probably because it is made up of ingredients that were always in the house and nothing special needed to be purchased! This is a simple pasta dish with tasty ingredients that isn’t heavy on the stomach! I love these kinds of pasta dishes as they don’t leave you feeling overly full after you’ve eaten them.

I got this recipe from the Giallo Zafferano website. It was in Italian, so I’m translating it here for you. The ingredients will still be in the metric units, so sorry to all my American readers out there 🙂

Spaghetti Poveri

1 medium red onion, finely chopped
1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
100 g of olives, finely chopped
3 sprigs of parsley, finely chopped
30 g of capers, drained and chopped
100 g. of anchovy fillets in oil
40 g. of fine breadcrumbs
Some red pepper flakes
400 g spaghetti
Olive oil

Cook the spaghetti until they are done, al dente.

While the pasta is cooking, heat olive oil in a pan (use enough to cover the bottom of the pan).

Add the onion and garlic and sauté until the onion begins to soften.

Add the capers and the anchovies and cook until the anchovies begin to melt (they actually dissolve – something I didn’t know would happen!).

Add the red pepper flakes and the olives. Cook for a little while and then add the parsley. Cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

In a separate small pan, heat some olive oil and add the breadcrumbs. Cook until they begin to toast.

Once the pasta is cooked, add it to the pan with the sauce. Add the toasted breadcrumbs and mix it all well (over low heat to blend the flavors).

Enjoy the pasta immediately, while it is hot. You can add some parmesan cheese if you’d like.

Pasta alla Puttanesca – YUM!!!


When I was in Italy earlier this month, I ventured into a book store in Milan and went straight to the cookbook section.  I wanted to see if there was a simple cookbook which gave great down-to-earth recipes for the simple foods created in Italy.  As I’ve mentioned before, I love Italian food because it is so simple – the ingredients are genuine and the taste is not too “messy”.  I found not one, but two, cookbooks which struck my fancy.  The first one was “La Cucina Milanese”…and this one had so many recipes in it that my mom cooks that is was like home to me 🙂  I was even surprised to find a chapter on Lumache e Rane (snails and frogs)!  Now, I’m not that adventurous but I guess these are widely eaten in the Milan area (I don’t think I’ve ever had them, though..thankfully!).  The other cookbook was “La Cucina Borghese”.  This book features recipes that are cooked in the countryside and with simple ingredients.  I have been experimenting with these books since I’ve been home and have discovered some twists on old recipes as well as some new recipes!  One of the new ones I tried was the Puttanesca sauce for spaghetti!  Of course, I’ve heard of this sauce but I’m not sure I ever really tried it.  The term comes from the Roman “ladies of the evening” and I think it’s named this way because the sauce has a bit of a kick to it!  It’s a funny name for a sauce that is absolutely delicious.  My version has an omission in it – olives!  I like olives by themselves, but I’m not crazy about them in a sauce.  But, if you are an olive lover, by all means, add them in!

Pasta alla Puttanesca

1.  Saute 2 cloves of garlic and about 1/2 t. red pepper flakes (add more if you like it hotter) in 1/4 cup olive oil. 

2.  Crumble a can of tuna and add 5 chopped up anchovy fillets.  Mix them up and add them to the garlic and oil mixture.

3.  Cook them a few minutes.  Add about 1 1/2 cups of marinara sauce and cook until the sauce is warmed.

4.  Add 1/4 cup drained capers and mix gently.

5.  Pour over 1 lb. of cooked spaghetti.  Top with some grated parmesan cheese, if desired.  ENJOY!!!