Ottolenghi's One Pot Orecchiette Puttanesca

Not sure why this is called a "puttanesca", but I will go with it......I love puttanesca sauce (peasant sauce, made with anchovies, capers and recipe is here).

This is a one pot yummy pasta dish with more North African flavors with chickpeas.......definitely NOT a Sicilian puttanesca sauce, but a delicious one pot pantry dish anyway.

I cut down on the garlic, and made it using only 1 can of was very delicious and a nice weeknight meal.  You can reduce or add more or less of what you like, that is what meals like this are made for.   A hodgepodge of what you have in the pantry.

I am reprinting the original recipe from Ottolenghi's new book FLAVOUR (in the UK) and FLAVOR here in America.

If you don't have orecchiette (little ears), then use shells.

Ottolenghi's One Pot Puttanesca

5 tablespoons olive oil
6 garlic cloves, crushed
1 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained well and patted dry
2 teaspoons hot smoked paprika (pimenton)
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons tomato paste
2 cups parsley, roughly chopped
2 teaspoons lemon zest
3 tablespoons baby capers
¾ cup Italian green olives (or other green olive), pitted and roughly chopped in half
9 ounces small, sweet cherry tomatoes (I used canned cherry tomatoes)
2 teaspoons superfine sugar (I used regular sugar)
1½ teaspoons caraway seeds, lightly toasted and crushed
9 ounces dried orecchiette pasta
2 cups vegetable or chicken stock
¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons water
salt and black pepper

In a large sauté pan, for which you have a lid, combine 3 tablespoons of the olive oil, the garlic, chickpeas, paprika, cumin, tomato paste, and a half teaspoon salt and place on medium-high heat. Fry for 12 minutes, uncovered, stirring every now and then, until the chickpeas are slightly crisp.   Remove 1/3 of the chickpeas and set aside.

In a small bowl, combine the parsley, lemon zest, capers and olives. 

Add 2/3 of the parsley mixture to the sauté pan, along with the cherry tomatoes, sugar and caraway seeds, and cook for 2 minutes on medium-high heat, stirring often.

Add the pasta, stock, water and three-quarter teaspoon salt and bring to a simmer. Decrease the heat to medium, cover and cook for 12 to 14 minutes or until the pasta is al dente.

Stir the remaining parsley mixture into the pan, drizzle with the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and garnish with the reserved fried chickpeas and a good grind of pepper. Serve at once.


Caraway seeds!?! Wow, I was just nodding along as I read through the ingredients, but caraway seeds threw me. Is that a common ingredient in Middle Eastern food? I always associate it with Eastern European, especially baking. This sounds great for another week of working from home lunches.

Stacey Snacks said…
Good question!
If you know Ottolenghi's recipe, he always throws an interesting twist in the mix!

I did not use the caraway seeds by the way, only because I did not have any!