Pasta Puttanesca





by Karman Meyer, RDN, LDN

Originally, this recipe was written for Food & Nutrition and it didn’t have much personal significance to me; it isn’t a secret family recipe and doesn’t have any unusual or unique ingredients. It was simply a new recipe to experiment with. But at the time I was testing this recipe, I was working with the geriatric population in a skilled nursing facility. One of my patients, an Italian man who had worked in fine dining restaurants his entire life, was less than impressed with the facility’s menu and it was to the point that I would go see him about every meal to make sure he was eating something. Each time I went, though, we would end up talking about our favorite foods, the restaurants we had worked in, and his health. So the weekend after I had tested the Pasta Puttanesca recipe, I offered to make some for him.

I don’t think I’ve ever been so nervous for someone to try a dish I prepared, but he loved it. From then on, I made sure he had Pasta Puttanesca whenever he wanted it. He went home not too long after that, but I wrote the recipe down so his daughter could prepare it for him.

Food is powerful. We are all connected by it….young and old, every culture, rich and poor. Food can help us heal, both physically and mentally. And sometimes food is comfort.

This recipe is for Mr. R 🙂

Spaghetti, cooked (enough for 2 people)
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 anchovies, rinsed and chopped
2 cups kale, chopped
¼ cup kalamata olives, pitted and chopped
1 ½ cups Homemade Marinara Sauce (recipe below)
Fresh grated Parmesan cheese
Fresh basil
In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add anchovies and kale, sauté for 5 minutes. Add olives and tomato sauce and cook for 5 minutes. Turn heat to low, and add cooked spaghetti to skillet with sauce, stirring to coat pasta. Serve with Parmesan cheese and fresh basil.
Homemade Marinara Sauce   (Makes 3.5 cups)
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 garlic cloves, minced fine
½ cup finely chopped carrots
½ small onion, finely chopped
1 28-oz. can peeled tomatoes
1 tsp. balsamic vinegar
¼ tsp. sea salt
Black pepper to taste
Dash of red pepper flakes
6 fresh basil leaves, minced
1 sprig fresh rosemary, minced (stem removed)
1 sprig fresh oregano, minced (stem removed)
Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat and sauté garlic, carrots and onions for 10 minutes. Add in tomatoes, balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Simmer on medium-low heat for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally and breaking apart tomatoes with a wooden utensil throughout cooking process. Mix in fresh herbs, turn off heat and allow to sit for five minutes. Sauce can be stored in refrigerator for up to 1 week.
Servings – 2 

KarmanKarman is a Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist who enjoys showing others how easy it is to make healthy, delicious food at home! Teaching people about how the right foods can help them feel better, look better and live better is her passion! You can stay connected with Karman on Twitter or through her blog, The Nutrition Adventure.