Monday, November 3, 2008

The BEST Arrabiata Sauce Ever

So Arabiatta sauce won the poll for favorite sauce. Literally meaning "angry," arrabiata is known for it's spiciness - something very popular in my Italian famiglia.

So I have researched and taste tested several recipes just to be able to provide you with the very best variety of the traditional arrabiata sauce. And you've got to serve it with penne or it would just break my heart (and the hearts of Italians everywhere).

Everyone better give this recipe a shot because I promise you, your eyes will water not only at the spiciness, but at the mere beauty of enjoying such buon cibo!
Buon Appetito!

ARRABIATA SAUCE

1TSP olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
5 cloves minced garlic (use more if you're like me)
1/2 cup red wine
2 TB brown sugar (the sweet secret!)
2 TB chopped fresh basil
1 small can tomato paste
1 1/2 TSP crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 TSP ground black pepper
2 large cans crushed tomatoes
2 TB chopped fresh parsley (for garnish)

Heat oil in large skillet. Saute onion and garlic for about 5 minutes.

Stir in the wine, sugar, basil, red pepper flakes, tomato paste, black pepper. Combine.

Mix in the crushed tomatoes and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 2o minutes (uncovered).

Mix into UNRINSED penne (I like the penne rigate, the sauce just sticks better!) and top with the chopped parsley.

MANGIA!

63 comments:

Meghan Poort said...

mmm... please come save us from our "ragu" sauce!

Stonethecrows said...

Yep..this is without doubt the best Arrabiata I've ever tasted...mmmm

Now, I'm sure you have a pasta meat sauce equally as good kicking around your kitchen!!!
Maybe you could post that as well!!!

BrickHouseCooker said...

What kind of red wine do you recommend for this sauce? I'm new at cooking with wine but I'm really interested in learning what wine goes best in certain dishes. Thanks!

una mamma italiana said...

Stonethecrows - THanks for the comment! What kind of meat sauce are you talking about exactly? A bolgnese (usualy made with ground veal where I'm from) or a hearty GRAVY (that's what my family calls a sauce simmered with an actual piece of pork)... Let me know and I'll post one just for you:)

Brick House Cooker - With a sauce as "angry" as arrabiatta, you definitely want a smoother, milder red wine. I would suggest a pinot noir. Try it and let me know what you think!

Grazie a tutti!

una mamma italiana said...

i meant "bolognese" sauce...sorry for the typo

Stonethecrows said...

Una mamma italiana

There's a "home cooked Italian" restaurant here in Toronto (there is a huge Italian community here) that makes this wonderful pasta sauce...rich wine flavoured, very thick with veal, beef and pork I believe. Apparently the recipe is a long time family secret. My friends and I have going for years but can't pry the recipe from the owners...anything close?
Thanks

una mamma italiana said...

Stonethecrows,
I love sauce....and a good challenge, so I'm gonna need a bit more descriptive details and I will try to get to the bottom of tis! Is the meat ground meat or perhaps a pork shoulder or something of that sort?

Fill me in on as much as you can and I will pool the knowledge of my family and figure it out!

By the way, whats the name of the restaurant? I used to live in Toronto myself!

Mr.Stevens said...

We enjoyed this last night before going to Eddie Izzard - EXCELLENT!

una mamma italiana said...

Mr. Stevens - Glad you ennjoyed it! Out of curiosity - what kind of pasta did you use? Penne?

Melanie said...

It was really good!!! I will definetly do that recipe again! I use Penne Rigate. and some parmesan cheese on top, it was simply delicious

una mamma italiana said...

So glad you liked it!! Keep checking for some new AWESOME recipes...there are big things in store for this blog!!!
~the mamma

Chelsea said...

what size cans are the small tomato paste and the large crushed tomatoes? Also, how do you simmer uncovered, I would imagine it would "pop" all over the place... Thanks!

una mamma italiana said...

the tomato paste cans are 6 oz. and the crushed tomatoes are 28 oz. cans. Simmer on a real low simmer. Its just to cook out the raw tomato taste - plus use a deep enough sauce pot. I have one cast iron post that i use ONLY for sauce becaue it holds the heat so well. And the sides are deep enough to control any splattering so you should be good to go with a deep pot! EVERY Italian needs at least one!
Ciao and happy cooking!

una mamma italiana said...

the tomato paste cans are 6 oz. and the crushed tomatoes are 28 oz. cans. Simmer on a real low simmer. Its just to cook out the raw tomato taste - plus use a deep enough sauce pot. I have one cast iron post that i use ONLY for sauce becaue it holds the heat so well. And the sides are deep enough to control any splattering so you should be good to go with a deep pot! EVERY Italian needs at least one!
Ciao and happy cooking!

Kimberly said...

This looks really good. I am searching for a recipe like this that uses fresh tomatoes. I have a ton of tomatoes from my garden that I need to use up quick before they go bad. Problem is I've never made pasta sauce from fresh tomatoes though. I will keep this one in mind when my garden is no longer producing tomatoes.

Natalie said...

Just wondering how much this makes?
Thanks

una mamma italiana said...

I'm pretty sure you could get almost 1 1/2 pounds out of this. You always want extra sauce though - cuz it's yummy!

Anonymous said...

I used this recipe to impress this wonderful man that I am dating who has spent alot of time in Italy... I am Sicilian and I felt like my heritage was on the line here... lol... he said and I quote - this was just like the sauce he use to get when he would eat at a little restaurant in Naples... so Thank You! Your sauce was a hit and I think I might have won his heart!

Karen said...

Awesome arrabiata sauce! As good as I have ever had! Karen B.

Anonymous said...

Absolutely delicious! Fruity and fresh, just great. But I added ca 1 teaspoon of salt, I felt that was just missing.... I am looking forward to find more pasta sauce recipes like that. Best, Denise

Lynn - Pittsburgh, PA said...

We just returned from a two week vacation in Italy and loved the arrabiata sauce. I am anxious to try your recipe - it sounds delicious and exactly what I'm searching for. Grazie!

una mamma italiana said...

Lynn - where in Italy did you taste the arrabiata?? This one is very Florentine! I hope you enjoy it:) I'd love a photo followup once you make it - we'll do a guest post on your experience! (if you're interested!)

Meghan said...

Hi there!

I've been searching for an arrabiata recipe and would love to try this out - only, I like using fresh tomatoes, as opposed to the canned kind - any chance you could tell me what 2 cans translates to in terms of fresh tomatoes? I know it's asking for a weird sort of judgment call, but I'd really appreciate it, because I really want to try this out!

:)

Anonymous said...

Made this last night and it was delicious. I added two spicy sausages with skins removed crumbled and browned along with one chicken sausage browned then sliced on a bias, to the sauce as it cooked. It was awesome! Better then the version at Bucca di Beppo. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Silly question probably, but I'm not much of a cook and I am realy desperate to impress the new man in my life :-) Does TB mean table spoon?? Thanks!

una mamma italiana said...

Yes!! TB means Tablespoon, and TSP or tsp means teaspoon!! Sorry for the confusion! And good luck with the new man! Salud!

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for quick reply :-) New man is Hungarian so likes spicey food, thought this might be a quick way to his heart :-)

Pam said...

Hi! My husband and I had a wonderful arrabiata last night at Tambellini's in Pittsburgh. I would love to try to make it myself and hope to use your recipe to try to come close!! For sauces, I like to use imported canned San Marzano whole plum tomatoes. For this recipe, should I use a hand blender to crush them first (and also use all the liquid from the can)? Also, what kind of onion is best?

Jairo said...

Hi i am going to make this sauce, can you enlight me with which other pasta, rather than penne, can work well?? Thanks.

Anonymous said...

I made this sauce and It was amazing - added some extra spice with a jalapeƱo homemade paste and served over rigatoni. thank you for sharing your awesome recipe

Helen said...

This recipe is perfect! I used 1 1/2 tsp Italian hot red pepper paste instead of the flakes, and scallions rather than onions, as I had some in the fridge and the recipe worked perfectly! It's healthy (not too much oil, salt or sugar), and really delicious. I also tried it with big tiger shrimp and linguine, which was incredible. Thank you for sharing your recipe!

Jas said...

Hi
I LOVE arrabiata sauce its my fav! I would love to try this recipe but with fresh tomatoes. Is it possible for u tell me roughly how many tomatoes to use and what kind? I am assuming a good cooking wine will work great?
Thanks

Alicia (UK) said...

FIVE cloves of garlic?? Wow! I am going to try this tonight, but will add a little salt and instead of chilli flakes (I assume that's the same as red pepper flakes?) I am going to use fresh de-seeded red and green chillis. I hope it turns out well, this is my fave sauce but as yet I have never been able to recreate one that is as good as I've had in restaurants!

adem khal said...

i was wondering, is it ok to do this dish without wine ?

Tim said...

How AMAZING is this sauce? Beyond amazing!!!. I have been on a quest for a recipe like this and today that quest ended. The balance of sweet and acidic tang is INSANELY delicious. I think the brown sugar makes ALL the difference. Would love to send you a photo of the result.

Joey said...

Awesome recipe! We had a overdose of chilli flakes and were on fire! But it was super tasty!!

una mamma italiana said...

ADEM - You could definitely do the sauce without wine but it won't be the same:( Still yummy though, I'm sure.

TIM - I would LOVE a photo of the result!

JAS - I have never tried making this with fresh tomatoes so I am not sure of how mnay to use. Maybe 10 - 15? That's a guess:)

JAIRO - Another great pasta to use is rigatoni if you don't have penne:) Buon Appetito!

Brit said...

This recipe is fantastic - it's the only sauce my family wants anymore. We're having it tonight with garlic bread and sun dried tomato bruschetta on the side. Thanks for posting this!

Dinner Doctor said...

1 teaspoon of oil doesn't seem to be enough. Am I reading it wrong?

Anonymous said...

Outstanding! I was surprised how few arrabiata recipes there are on the traditional online food sites. I'm so glad I found your blog! I made this with fresh tomatoes, quadrupled the recipe and canned it! I'll be able to pull your delicious sauce off the shelf and throw together an awesome meal with garden-fresh tomatoes all year. Thank you!

Harry said...

This recipe looks excellent, thanks for posting it. I was just wondering, how would I make the sauce by substituting the canned tomatoes for fresh, skinned tomatoes? What kind of quantities would I need? And, finally, would you even recommend doing that in the first place? Thanks a lot!

Darren Proctor (Coach Proc) said...

I made your recipe last night. YUM! It was so good. Thank you so much! :-)

Aseem Saxena said...

Hi,

Some quick queries:

1. This quantity sill suffice for how much pasta (dry) in grams or cups?

2. How long can I store the sauce in a refrigerator

3. Can we add something to the sauce to make it last longer?

Regards,

Aseem

od-kuchni said...

Hi! Many thanks for sharing this recipe! I did this few days ago and it was lovely. I added some passata instead of canned tomatos and dried basil instead of fresh, but still sauce was delioious!

Barb said...

This sauce is so darn good! I make it all the time and every time its is mmm mmmm mmmmm! My boyfriend always wants me to make a doyble batch so he can eat it all the next week!

Lightstriker said...

Good... but not spicy enough. Added cayenne pepper and jalapeno pepper to make it burn a bit.

I also like my sauce to have "chunks" of vegetable, so chopped mushroom add that without changing the taste.

Also tried it once with bits of black forest ham. I know, I know... Arrabiata is supposed to be vegetable only. But it tasted amazing, so why not?

Lightstriker said...

Oh! And yes... 5 cloves of garlic? WAY not enough. For me, at least 2 full bulbs. At least.

Anonymous said...

I finally got around to make this recipe at home. I've had it so many times at different restaurants and wished I could make it at home.
Your recipe helped guide me the best! Thanks so much. It smells just like the restau sauce. I won't be eating this meal out anymore, only at home! :)
Also, for other users: The type of tomatoes you use makes a huge difference! If using canned tomatoes, use only those that are imported from italy. :)

Elyssa said...

My boyfriend doesn't eat pasta ( strict diet!) So I made it with spaghetti squash, it was amazing! I also added spicy turkey sausage (no red meat either) after it was done simmering so the flavors wouldn't mix and it was a hit! Thanks for sharing!

Patience said...

Hi mamma italiana! I made this sauce tonight and it was fantastico! I added a little salt and some fresh shrimp and feta. Thank you so much for posting this!

Anonymous said...

Try a finely grated carrot instead of sugar!

Anonymous said...

Naaaah, I prefer the arrabiata to be less tomatish, more oily and hotter.

Anonymous said...

This recipe was total crap. I made it for my family and no one finished their plate. Followed the instructions to a "T." One word: Yuck.

Anonymous said...

Good Italian-American sauce! But not authentic arabbiata by any stretch of the imagination. red wine? onions? tomato paste? basil? Curious what "traditional" recipes you're comparing. Arabbiata comes from Rome. Typical American mistake of thinking that "Italian" food is some megalith and that anyone from Italy knows what Italian food is, rather than realizing that "Italian" food is super duper regional. Most Italian families that came to the US came from Sicily or the south because it was poorer (mine were part of that wave), and food is way different than say, in Milano or Roma. Anyway, it's a fresh sauce, not heavy and overcooked, that lets you taste the ingredients. Garlic, olive oil, tomatoes, peperoncini, and a bit of pecorino to finish. Done.

Anonymous said...

Simply Fantastic! I always taste as I go and it just kept getting better. It was great on the penne.

Its going to be a standard in my cooking for a long time.

Would it be a crime to add mushrooms?

Thanks so much for posting it.

Nnen said...

This sauce was simply lovely. I made it for my family, and my husband (who usually pulls a face when we have pasta) went back for seconds! Thanks

Anonymous said...

IT IS ALMOST ILLEGAL TO DO ARRABBIATA WITH ONIONS, WINE AND LEMON HERE IN ITALY... PLEASE DONT FOLLOW THIS RECIPE BUT JUST STICK TO THE ORIGINAL: TOMATO GARLIC OIL , RED PEPPER , PARSLEY AND PECORINO/PARMIGIANO.

Anonymous said...

I was thinking of making this until i saw the recent negative comments, is it really as nasty as some are saying?
One thing it looks like it would need is a couple of tablespoons of salt

Anonymous said...

I've just made this and used fresh tomatoes instead of tinned as i have got a load in the refridgerator that i don't wan't to waste, and i'm very happy with the results it has come out really nice:-)
I know it probably isn't how your supposed to have it but i made it as a sauce to stir Venison Meatballs into.

presa1200 said...

Wow, so arrabiata and penne are like heavenly couple that can not be separated.

presa1200 said...

I want to give it a twist. Maybe i can add some carrot juice instead.

presa1200 said...

To the anonymous user above, are you a shallow food purist who only sees the world in black and white? What do you mean it's illegal, are you afraid the altered version tastes better than your so called authentic recipe?

Anonymous said...

I'm surprised at some of the more recent comments. I've made this many times now and my family and I enjoy this recipe quite a bit. What's truly nice about this is that I generally have all the ingredients in my pantry and refrigerator so can make this at any time. Whether or not this is a true arrabiatta sauce or not, I enjoy the flavors.

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