Yet another simple and delicious seafood pasta dish from Biba Caggiano that only takes as long as it takes to cook the pasta: pasta shells with calamari, tomatoes, anchovies, and chile pepper flakes. This is best with fresh squid, but frozen squid will work too. The most important is not to overcook the squid, as that would make it rubbery. The addition of a bit of butter and cream takes the ‘edge’ off the tomato sauce, and makes it work better with the squid.
150 grams (1/3 lb) pasta shells, conchiglie
225 grams (1/2 lb) calamari / squid
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
2 anchovy fillets, minced, or 10 cm (4″) anchovy paste from a tube
1 can (400 grams/14 oz) peeled tomatoes, pureed in the food processor
salt to taste
chile pepper flakes to taste
1/2 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp heavy cream
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. When the water boils, add the pasta and salt. Cook al dente according to package instructions.
Fresh squid has more flavor, but it will be more work to clean it first.
This will work with many dry Italian white wines. I like greco di tufo or fiano di avellino with this.
One of my signature dishes: Rosa di Parma. Fillet of beef stuffed with prosciutto, parmigiano, garlic, and rosemary. Very tender, loaded with flavor, and great with sauteed spinach and a nice Barolo. I’ve cooked this for dinner guests for years and years, and the only change I’ve made over the years is that now sometimes I cook it sous-vide. But the oven works fine, too.