Penne all’Arrabbiata

Arrabbiata means angry, and if made right these penne are spicy. Though the versions offered by the really cheap eateries in Rome rely primarily on garlic and hot pepper for their punch, some of the versions printed in cookbooks also call for onions.

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes


1 pound (450 g) penne (or spaghetti if you prefer)

2/3 pound (300 g) peeled, seeded, and chopped plum tomatoes or a drained 1-pound can of tomatoes

1 finely chopped medium sized onion (optional)

2 minced cloves of garlic, or more, to taste (don’t overdo it)

1/4 cup (60 ml) olive oil

1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper, or more, to taste, OR 1-2 fresh hot peppers, seeded stemmed, and shredded

5-6 basil leaves, shredded


1 1/4 cups grated pecorino Romano, or, if you find it too sharp, 2/3 cup each of grated Parmigiano and pecorino, mixed

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