Thirty Minute Thursday: Spaghetti alla Puttanesca Bianca~

10 03 2011

For Thirty Minute Thursday this week, I selected Spaghetti alla Puttanesca Bianca….or Spaghetti with Olives, Capers, and Anchovies.   This recipe is found in the Seafood section of Giuliano Hazan’s Thirty Minute Pasta.

I have to tell you…this goes together incredibly quickly.   You’ll have plenty of time to do the little bit of chopping and prep work, put your feet up for 10 minutes, and then start your pasta and sauce.  It’s quick!  Ok, I halve all the recipes, but it doesn’t take much longer to chop 2 Tablespoons of something than it does to chop 1 Tablespoon!

Don’t even bother to start cooking your sauce until you’ve added the pasta to the water.  This sauce cooks in less than 5 minutes, start to finish.  I didn’t find that my anchovies “melted” into the olive oil the way it described…although it came pretty close.  I was able to find pitted kalamata olives at Trader Joe’s.  When I saw those, there was NO way I was leaving without at least one jar!  *Ü*

Tasting Notes~
I’m not even going to try and say that you won’t taste the anchovies in this dish.  I’ll say you may not taste them…and, depending on your ability to appreciate those savory tastes that lean toward fishiness…like anchovies or sardines or mackerel…you may enjoy this dish immensely!  My husband really enjoyed it.  He thought it made a great side dish to cold fried chicken.  I guess the textures were opposite and the flavors complementary.   I, on the other hand…went and got the cold fried chicken that was left from last night, because, sadly, I do not have the ability to enjoy that fishy taste.  I can usually eat anchovies…on a Caesar salad…if I can control the amount I’m eating.  I find it takes just a little bit for me to enjoy the flavors.  I think that was where I ran into difficulty with this dish.  The anchovies may have been too heavy for my taste, and if I reduced it some, it might be fine.  It wasn’t bad, it was just more of a fishy taste than I could eat a plate of.  I’ve made other sauces with anchovies and not had this problem.  Like I said, Bruce enjoyed it and couldn’t quite place the “fishiness” I commented on, and if he did…that was one of the flavors he liked and was intrigued by.

Look Who’s Cooking…
Joining in and cooking some great dishes from the same book are:

Chaya from Bizzy B. Bakes.  Chaya made Penne with Spinach and Ricotta this week, and does it ever look good!  So far, Giuliano is keeping within the time lines in her kitchen!  Lovely presentation Chaya!

Kayte from Grandma’s Kitchen Table is also with us, and she created Linguine al Limone, or Linguine with Lemon.  She says this one is a keeper…and she’s already working up her own combinations for additions!  You GO Kayte!  I have to agree with you!  And you won’t ever know just how close we came to doing the same recipe on the same night! LOL!  I was looking at this and the lemons on the butcher block!  I’m glad you made it first though…now I know to make sure and add half a pound of the shrimp in the freezer!