Linguini alla puttanesca

Linguine alla puttanesca

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Linguini alla puttanesca is variation on a South Italian dish that was created more or less by accident in the 1950s in the restaurant annex night club Sancho Fellone. At one day, some late guests were arriving with great hunger. The owner had nothing really left in his kitchen, except some anchovies, olives and a few tomatoes. He made a great sauce of it and served it with pasta. It tasted so delicious that the guests came back in the next days and only wanted this “alla puttanesca”. After that, word of mouth started doing its work and it became a famous and easy Italian dish.

Somehow it is quite similar to the Sicilian tuna pasta that was published a few weeks ago. It is the same region, the same simplicity and above all, the same great taste.

Linguini alla puttanesca

Linguini alla puttanesca

Linguini alla puttanesca is an Italian easy and surprising recipe based on some kitchen leftovers: anchovies, capers, olives and tomatoes. Together with pasta it cannot become more Italian.
Servings 2


  • 200 gram linguini
  • 80 gram black olives
  • 80 gram green olives
  • 160 gram anchovies
  • 8 pieces ripe vine tomatoes
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 piece chili pepper
  • 2 tbsp capers
  • 1/2 glas white wine
  • some basilicum leaves
  • some lemon juice
  • pepper, salt


  • chop the tomatoes in large pieces
  • chop the garlic and the chilli pepper into fine pieces.
  • Cut the anchovies into pieces.
  • Heat olive oil (you can use some of the oil of the anchovies) in a pan.
  • Bake the garlic and the chili pepper for two minutes.
  • Extinguish with the white wine.
  • Let it reduce a bit, and then add the tomatoes, anchovies, black and green olives. Let it simmer for 10 minutes.
  • Meanwhile heat water and cook the linguini.
  • Cut the basilicum leaves into small pieces, and leave some of them for garnishing.
  • When cooked, drain the pasta and mix it with the sauce. Put some of the cooking water aside in case the sauce is too thick.
  • Add the basilicum, some lemon juice and pepper and salt tot taste.
    Linguini alla puttanesca
  • Let it simmer a few more minutes so that the flavours can integrate, and then serve immediately.
    Linguini alla puttanesca

There are many variations on this recipe, just as the stories from where it comes. I have my inspiration however from greatitalianchefs, which in this case seems a reliable source.

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