Another family favorite.
Tomatoey (I don't think that's a word) and creamy.
Quick and easy!
Penne alla Vodka
One 28-ounce can Italian tomatoes with their liquid
1 pound penne
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
10 medium cloves of garlic
Crushed hot red pepper
1/4 cup vodka
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil for finishing the sauce
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
Bring six quarts of water to a boil in an eight quart pot over hight heat, add 2 tablespoons of salt.
Pour the tomatoes and their liquid into a blender or bowl of a food processor. Using quick on/off pulses, process the tomatoes until they are finely chopped. (If you do this for an extended about of time you will incorporate too much air and turn them pink).
Stir in the penne into the boiling water. Bring the water back to a boil quickly, and stir frequently. Cook the penne, semi-covered, stirring occasionally until it is done according to the package directions.
Meanwhile in a very large pan heat the olive oil over medium heat. Crush the garlic cloved with the side of your knife and add them to the hot oil. Cook, shaking the paan until the garlic is lightly brown. This will only take a few minutes. DO NOT BURN the garlic it will ruin the whole dish so watch it very closely. Add the tomatoes closely and carefully to the pan - they will splatter! Bring the tomatoes to a boil, season lightly with salt and crushed red pepper, boil for a couple of minutes. Pour in the vodka, lower the heat so the sauce is simmering lively, and simmer until the pasta is ready.
Just before the pasta is done pour in the cream. Add the tablespoon of olive oil. If your pan is large enough for both the sauce and pasta. Drain the pasta and add it to the pan. If not, drain the pasta and add the sauce. Bring the sauce and pasta to a boil. Stirring to coat the pasta with the sauce. Check and see if it needs additional salt or red pepper. Boil until the sauce is reduced enough to cling to the pasta.
Remove the pan form the heat and sprinkle the cheese over the pasta and mix. Serve immediately.
Source: Adapted from Lidia's Italian-American Kitchen, Lidia Bastianich
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