Arrabiata Spaghetti Sauce recipe

Pasta alla scarpariello

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Alright... here is a famous italian dish not everybody has heard of, pasta alla scarpariello. In italian, scarpa means shoe; accordingly scarpariello means shoemaker. So this is the shoemaker's pasta recipe. Often, to many people this name points to a chicken recipe... but as you can see there is nothing in that name that means 'chicken'. In my opinion the recipe I present you here is the real scarpariello recipe from Italy. The scarpariello version with chicken of this recipe is more of an italian-american creation, and it isn't a dish with pasta; which isn't a bad thing in itself but if a recipe has nothing to do with pasta then it's off the focus of this website!


* A little bit of extra virgin olive oil
* An onion, diced
* 3 oz pancetta, cut in dice
* 28 oz italian plum tomatoes chopped in small pieces
* 2 or 3 eggplants, diced
* 2 garlic cloves, to be pressed in
* 1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
* half teaspoon of hot chili flakes, to taste
* 1 pound mozzarella (500g), diced
* half cup grated Parmesan cheese
* half cup fresh basil, all leaves cut in two
* salt, freshly ground pepper
* 1 pound (500g) any short pasta type; such as rigatoni, penne, mezzani  or any other

Cooking instructions:

In a skillet, heat up 2 tablespoon olive oil under medium-high setting;
saute gently the onion until slightly browned.
Mix in diced pancetta and cook for 3-4 minutes, or until color changes a bit.
Add in the tomatoes and press in the 2 garlic cloves.
Simmer uncovered under low setting for 15-20 minutes, until texture is thicker.
Add in the hot pepper flakes and salt.

Meanwhile, in another large saucepan heat up 3 tablespoons olive oil under medium-high setting,
add in the diced eggplant.
It is important to try to cook all eggplant at same time; so do not allow any stacking in the saucepan;
cook the eggplant in 2 batches if necessary.
Spice up and cook until the eggplant browns; this might very well require more oil, though.
Place cooked eggplant on absorbant tissue, to remove excess oil.
Add the cooked eggplant to the sauce skillet, check seasoning, reserve under low setting.

Cook your pasta as per package instructions.
Strain the pasta making sure you set aside 1 cup pasta cooking water.
Transfer the cooked pasta in a large bowl;
pour in the sauce, mixing it gently to coat your pasta.
If sauce is too thick, add some pasta cooking water, as needed.
Add in the mozzarella cubes, the parmesan and stir well.
Serve, garnishing each plate with the basil leaves on top..

These ingredient quantities will be good for 4 generous portions of scarpariello pasta.