Penne all’arrabbiata

penne all'arrabbiata

Can you believe it? I have NEVER in my whole life made or even attempted to make an arrabbiata sauce, which to the non Italians amongst you, means the “angry” sauce. The reason why it’s angry, in case you are wondering, is that it contains loads of chilli, making it quite hot, hence cross! If I’m not mistaken this sauce comes from the Lazio region . I got the inspiration to try it out when I went to Rome, the capital of Lazio, at the beginning of September. Also I had to use some beautiful chilli peppers which had been happily growing on my windowsill, courtesy of my youngest son who is a chilli fanatic and had given me a plant to take care of (I murdered the previous plant he gave me so I had been nurturing this latest one with tender, loving care and it promptly rewarded me with lovely plump red chillies). I understand there are different versions of arrabbiata sauce out there  but the one I made, after loads of searching on the internet, seems to be the kosha one. Candi feel free to comment at this point. You must be amazed about the fact this was my first EVER attempt at it!  I’m sure they sell it ready made in the UK in many supermarkets. But you know how I feel about ready made stuff: if cooking it from scratch is actually a straightforward affair (like in this case) why buy it in  a jar/box, etc? God knows what they put in those ready made meals! Anyway, I  promise you the arrabbiata sauce is extremely simple to make as it is basically a tomato sauce with the addition of chilli and parsley but I was amazed about  how good it tasted. Really fresh. The way to serve it is with plenty of pecorino cheese grated on it. Pecorino is a very strong sheep cheese which looks a bit like parmesan. If you can’t find it (Sainsbury sells it, for example) use parmesan instead but I suspect Romans would be horrified about this substitution….

INGREDIENTS (for approx 350-400 gr. pasta)

1 tin chopped tomatoes

2 cloves of garlic, squashed

2 large red chillies, deseeded and finely chopped

5-6 tablespoons olive oil

vegetable stock cube

chopped parsley

grated pecorino


Heat the olive oil in a pan and gently shallow fry the garlic cloves for a couple of minutes in order to infuse the oil. Mind they don’t become too dark. Add the chopped chillies and gently fry for a few more minutes. Finally add the chopped tomatoes and the stock cube and let it simmer for approx 15 minutes. When the pasta is ready, dress it with the sauce, sprinkle some fresh chopped parsley on it and serve with some grated pecorino cheese on the top.

my fabulous chilli plant


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2 Responses to “Penne all’arrabbiata”

  • AL tuo coming out risponderò con il mio: MAI FATTA L’ARRABBIATA (nel senso della pasta, purtroppo). Ho un marito che odia il piccante e quindi non sono stimolata a farla. Ma agli membri della famiglia potrebbe piacere e a me la tua versione veramente comoda e facile dovrebbe venire comoda.
    E poi… mi aspettavo una foto della famosa pianta di Tom.

    • Ah ma tutto d’un tratto non mi sento così inadeguata! Meno male! Ho caricato una bella foto della mia mitica pianta così la vedi…:-)

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