- Kosher salt
- 12 ounces penne
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
- 1 large shallot or 1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
- 1 28-ounce can whole plum tomatoes, crushed by hand
- 3/4 cup vodka (optional)
- 3/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1/3 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese, plus more for topping (optional)
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley or basil
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook as the label directs. Reserve 1 cup of the cooking water, then drain the pasta. Drizzle lightly with olive oil, toss and set aside.
Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the shallot and cook, stirring, until soft, about 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes, vodka, the reserved cooking water, 1/2 teaspoon salt and the red pepper flakes. Bring to a rapid simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly thickened, 12 to 15 minutes. Stir in the cream and simmer 1 more minute.
Add the cooked pasta, the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil, the grated cheese and parsley to the sauce. Cook, tossing, 2 to 3 minutes. Season with salt. Divide among bowls and top with more cheese.
Per serving: Calories 607; Fat 25 g (Saturated 10 g); Cholesterol 49 mg; Sodium 982 mg; Carbohydrate 77 g; Fiber 6 g; Protein 18 g
Photograph by Christopher Testani