with whole wheat pasta, fresh basil and garlic crumbs

From Rebar Modern Food Cookbook by Audrey Alsterberg and Wanda Urbanowicz

Serves 4


2 Tbsp olive oil

1 yellow onion, or white parts of a bunch of green onions

1 1/2 tsp salt

6 garlic cloves, minced

2 bay leaves

1/2 tsp red chile flakes, or more to taste

1 cup red table wine

1 x 28oz can whole or diced tomatoes

4 Roma tomatoes, seeded and diced, or cherry tomatoes, halved

10 fresh basil leaves, coarsely chopped

1/2 tsp cracked pepper

1 lb whole wheat pasta

1 cup crispy garlic breadcrumbs


Heat a saucepan over medium heat.  Add oil and heat until a piece of onion sizzles on contact.  Saute onion with 1/2 tsp salt for 10 minutes, stirring often.  Add garlic, bay leaves, chile flakes and saute another 5 minutes.  Deglaze the pan with red wine and let it reduce until thick and syrupy.  Add the fresh and canned tomatoes, bail, pepper and remaining salt.  Simmer gently, partially covered, for up to one hour.  Meanwhile, put a large pot of water on to boil to cook the pasta.

Before serving, season the sauce with more salt, pepper, fresh basil and/or chiles to taste.  Add sugar to balance acidity, if required.  To thicken, stir in a few tablespoons of tomato paste.

To serve, cook spaghettini until al dente.  Drain and return the pasta to the pot.  toss with half of the arrabbiata sauce and transfer to a serving dish.  Serve remaining sauce on the side along with grated Parmesan, chopped fresh basil and crispy garlic breadcrumbs to sprinkly on top.