Our velvety tomato sauce is spiked with cubes of salty capicola and a few shots of vodka. Make it a Meal: Caesar salad and a glass of Pinot Noir will shine with this dish.
- 12 ounces whole-wheat penne
- 1 to 2 ounces capicola, or pancetta, finely diced
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup vodka
- 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
- 1/4 cup half-and-half
- 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1/4-1/2 teaspoons crushed red pepper
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
- freshly ground pepper, to taste
- Step 1
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook penne until just tender, 12 minutes or according to package directions.
- Step 2
- Meanwhile, cook capicola (or pancetta) in a large saucepan over medium heat until crisp, about 4 minutes. Drain on a paper towel.
- Step 3
- Return the saucepan to medium-low heat; add onion and garlic and cook until the onion is translucent, about 1 minute. Increase heat to high; add vodka and bring to a boil. Boil until reduced by about half, about 2 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, half-and-half, Worcestershire sauce and crushed red pepper to taste; reduce to a simmer and cook until thickened, about 10 minutes.
- Step 4
- Drain the pasta; serve topped with the sauce and sprinkled with the capicola (or pancetta), basil and pepper.
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