What can be easier for pot luck than pasta dishes? The plan for one night on the holiday weekend is to have freshly grilled homemade Italian sausage sandwiches so today was the day to get a few things ready ahead of time of course the sausage is seasoned and ready to grind tomorrow and then package it up to freeze as well as 1 batch of brioche buns. I’m thinking of a pasta dish and found a little spicy number that sounds like it will be just the ticket for the 4th of July…Jamie Oliver’s Kick Arse version calls for some real heat that I intend to tone down so everyone can enjoy it and tonight since I haven’t a thing planned for my own dinner I’m making a test run. Two links below for the recipe…I was a little confused by the first since it didn’t explain to the average cook what a pangrattato is and I didn’t have a book recipe version I added another link to refer to…for lack of a better explanation for pangrattato, crunchy seasoned bread crumbs.
First for me was to reduce the number of peppers and to use what I had, those hot little Asian peppers I left the peppers whole and sliced up a small sweet pepper to ease the heat factor, but use all hot if you like it that way. I added in extra fresh herbs to the sauce recipe instead of just dried oregano, salt and pepper for an added taste of freshness. *Optional: One added touch is to melt 3 anchovy fillets into the oil, chili’s and garlic.
Jamie Oliver’s Penne Arrabiata slightly adapted to serve 6 as a side dish
1/4+ fresh bread crumbs
½ fresh herbs,basil oregano, thyme chopped
1 clove garlic chopped
*optional, a few grates of lemon zest
Mix all the pangrattato ingredients and a glug of olive together in a bowl. Tip onto a baking tray, then spread out evenly and toast under the grill for 2 to 4 minutes, or until lightly golden, giving the tray a jiggle occasionally for even cooking. Set aside until serving time. Alternately make the pangrattato ahead of time in a heated sauté pan stove top.
3 to 4 small fresh red chilis, pierced and left whole
6 cloves of garlic, sliced
1-28 ounce San Marzano whole tomatoes, roughly chopped or 4 cups fresh homemade marinara
6 ounces vegetable or chicken stock
1 pound favorite short cut pasta, like penne
a bunch of fresh basil leaves, torn
*optional additional fresh oregano leaves, torn
freshly grated parmesan cheese
*optional: ¼ SCOTCH BONNET CHILLI, VERY FINELY CHOPPED
Add a splash of olive oil to a large pan over a medium heat, then fry the chili and garlic for 1 to 2 minutes, or until softened and smelling fantastic, then pour in the tomatoes and veg stock and bring up to a simmer.
Meanwhile, add the pasta to a pot of boiling salted water and cook according to the packet instructions. When the pasta is al dente (still with a bit of bite), drain, reserving a cup of the cooking water.
Tip the pasta and most of the basil into the tomato sauce, then cook for a further minute or so, adding a splash of reserved cooking water to loosen, if needed.
Divide between your plates, then finish with a few shavings of Parmesan, the remaining basil leaves, a sprinkling of Scotch bonnet chili (if using), and some crunchy pangrattato. Finish with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, then serve.