Penne with Tomato and Chili Sauce Recipe

Penne with Tomato and Chili Sauce Recipes

Ingredients :

25g dried porcini mushrooms

90g butter

150g pancetta or rindless smoked streaky bacon, diced

1-2 dried red chilies, to taste

2 garlic cloves, crushed

8 ripe Italian plum tomatoes, peeled and chopped

a few fresh basil leaves, torn, plus extra to garnish

350g dried penne

50g grated Parmesan cheese

25g grated Pecorino cheese

Method :

Soak the dried mushrooms in warm water to cover for 15-20 minutes. Drain, then squeeze dry with your hands. Finely chop the mushrooms. Melt 50g of the butter in a medium frying pan or saucepan. Add the pancetta or bacon and stir fry over a medium heat until golden and slightly crispy. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.

Add the chopped mushrooms to the pan and cook in the same way. Remove and set aside with the pancetta or bacon. Crumble in one chili, add the garlic and cook, stirring, for a few minutes until the garlic turns golden. Add the tomatoes and basil and season with salt. Cook gently, stirring occasionally, for 10-15 minutes. Meanwhile, cook the penne in a pan of boiling salted water until al dente.

Add the pancetta or bacon and the mushrooms to the tomato sauce. Taste for seasoning, adding more chilies if you like. If the sauce is too dry, stir in a little of the pasta water. Drain the pasta and tip it into a warmed bowl. Dice the remaining butter, add it to the pasta with the cheeses, then toss until well coated. Pour the tomato sauce over the pasta, toss well and serve immediately, with a few basil leaves sprinkled on top.

There are many different versions of this dish. It is sometimes made without the meat, and fresh parsley is occasionally used instead of the basil used here. This famous pasta dish is known in Italy as penne all' arrabbiata - arrabbiata (literally "furious") referring to the fiery nature of the chili.

Serves 4-5

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