4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes (or more if you wish),
or hot red pepper paste
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tablespoons capers in brine, drained and minced
2 cups pureed fresh or canned plum tomatoes
1/2 cup vodka
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
1 pound penne rigate or farfalle (butterfly pasta)
Fine sea salt to taste
1/4 cup reserved pasta cooking water
Melt the butter in a large sauté pan (12-14 inches). Stir in the red pepper flakes and cook about 1 minute over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook until soft. Stir in the capers and cook 1 minute longer.
Add the tomatoes and vodka and cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Slowly pour in the cream and cook over low heat for an additional 5 minutes. Add half the cheese and keep the sauce warm while the penne are cooking.
Cook the penne or farfalle in 4 to 6 quarts of rapidly boiling salted water until al dente. Drain the penne, reserving 1/4 cup of the cooking water.
Transfer the penne to the sauté pan with the reserved water and stir the ingredients well over medium heat until hot. Sprinkle on the remaining cheese and stir to blend.
Transfer the penne to a serving platter. Serve hot.
This recipe is featured on show 2007 – Give Me Pasta.
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