Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Penne Puttanesca with Salmon Polpette

I'm stepping out of the Cuban zone and going Italian. I tried this recipe before and liked it, so I decided to do it again and post it. I have copied this recipe from Rachel Ray's Puttanesca with Tuna Polpette. Substituting salmon for the tuna. I'm going to cut this recipe in half for me, but listed are Rachel's proportions and instructions.

1 pound penne
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for tuna (salmon)
5 to 6 anchovies, in jars with red pepper, if plain anchovies add 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
4 large cloves garlic, pressed or finely chopped
1 (28-ounce) can tomatoes
1 cup chicken or seafood stock
Freshly ground black pepper
A few tablespoons capers, drained
A handful pitted black olives, oil cured or kalamata, chopped
1 pound tuna steak (salmon fillets)
1 large egg
1/2 cup bread crumbs
A handful flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
1/2 cup basil leaves, shredded

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add pasta and cook to al dente. Drain and keep warm.

Heat extra-virgin olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat, add anchovies and stir into oil until melted. Add the garlic, turn heat to low and saute for a couple of minutes. Stir in the tomatoes crushing them up, then stir in stock. Season with a little black pepper, add capers and olives and simmer a few minutes.

While sauce simmers, cut salmon into chunks and grind in food processor into coarse mixture. Pulse in the egg, bread crumbs and parsley and season with a little salt and black pepper. Remove tuna mixture from the processor to a bowl and add a drizzle of olive oil. Stir to combine. (Adding the oil will prevent mixture from sticking to your hands as you roll the balls.) Roll the tuna into small balls and drop into the sauce. Cover the pot and simmer the tuna balls in the sauce, about 4 to 5 minutes.

Place the pasta into a serving bowl. Add the tuna (salmon) and sauce, toss to coat and garnish with shredded basil.


  1. Love Italian! In Cuba, whenever my parents and I went to a "fancy" pizzería in Havana (in the early 60's to the mid and late 70's there were some, like
    "Vita Nouva" —which gave origin to one of the most deliciously seasoned Italian sauces I have tasted anywhere— "Montecattini" or "La Romanita" we would chuckle under our breaths whenever we saw the "Pasta a la putanesca" heading.... You know why.... (evil grin here). This dish you made looks amazing! I want some!. Love and kisses.

  2. I really like the anchovies in the sauce, I think I would have put more than the recipe called for.

    And, I know what you mean, my mother's favorite chuckle came from the word computadora, since my first mother-in-law's name was (is) Dora

    Un abrazo.