Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Spicy Pink Vodka Sauce


I would normally shy away from any dish involving the word "spicy" in the title, as I am what is characteristically known as a "big sissy." However, half a teaspoon of cayenne pepper in a full can of tomato sauce seemed doable even in my eyes, so I gave it a shot. Also, this may have been one of the only times in the history of the world that I actually had cream in my fridge, so I figured, strike while the iron is hot, right?

It was well worth it. The spicyness added only a level of character to the sauce, which was overall of a medium consistency a strong flavors. I used scallions as my onion in this sauce, and while I've previously found it hard to work with most onions (re: big sissy), scallions may be my new favorite ingredient. Mild, yet interesting. Sweet, yet still adding that onion bite to dishes. Without overpowering your palate every time your teeth crunch on a piece. I'm quite a fan.

One warning: at least on my gas stove, the beginning instructions from the recipe are way too long. After a failed attempt, I halved all of them, up until the tomatoes are added.

All in all, however, this sauce had a lot of pleasant surprises that added up to a well-worth it dinner, even with the unmentioned amounts of cream added to it (so much for that waistline, eh?)

Recipe from The Cook's Bible

2 tbsp olive oil

1 small onion, diced and peeled

2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced

1 can crush tomatoes

½ cup vodka

½ tsp red pepper flakes

2 cups cream

½ tsp kosher salt

1 tsp sugar

Ground pepper to taste

Heat the olive oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet. Add the onions and sauté over medium heat for 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for one minute. Add the tomatos, and bring to a simmer, and cook for 10 minutes. Ad the vodka and cook for another 10 minues.

Add the remaining ingredients except black pepper and simmer another 15.

Enough for 1 ½ pounds pasta.

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