It is no joke when I say that Spaghetti alla Puttanesca has a history almost as rich as the dish itself. Supposedly crafted in Southern Italy mid-20th century, the dish’s scandalous name has been credited to “women of the night.” (I know for some reason you have to smirk while reading that). —And while I was researching this dish I found countless myths surrounding its development. One of the most popular stories concluded that this recipe was an easy meal women could cook in a hurry between clients. And it went further to say that the full-bodied scent of the sauce that wafted into the streets was designed to entice more clients. Another myth explains that married women cooked this dish for their husbands in order to limit the amount of time they needed to be away from their lovers. Hmmmm. All of the scenarios are pretty interesting …one has to be THE story.
So spaghetti puttanesca is far from subtle—–it is downright BOLD. Whether its past is as saucy as the fables above or not, it holds true as a classic, old-as-time Italian dish.
Check out our recipe for Spaghetti alla Puttanesca and our wine pairings to compliment the dish.
Donna Picciocchi, Editor