La Vera Cucina

Pasta Puttanesca

For brothers Matteo and Salvatore Pocchi (Poh-key), the aroma of their mother’s pasta puttanesca instantly rekindles warm childhood memories of watching her busily preparing meals in the family kitchen. Today, their Fratelli Village Pizzeria (“fratelli” means brothers in Italian) attracts Scarborough, ON, locals with consistently great-tasting wood-fired pizzas.

Here, the Pocchi brothers share their family’s recipe for Pasta Puttanesca, which includes drizzling fresh olive oil over warm pasta and sauce, just before serving, to create a memorable burst of mouthwatering aroma!



  • 1 pound linguine pasta (dry)
  • 4 tablespoons fresh extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons capers
  • 4 alici (anchovy) filets, drained and chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 6 peeled plum tomatoes, chopped
  • ⅓ cup kalamata olives, pitted and chopped
  • ¼ cup seasoned breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons Parmigiano Reggiano, finely grated
  • 1 pinch red pepper flakes



Boil linguine in water until al dente, ten to twelve minutes. In a skillet, heat one tablespoon of fresh extra virgin olive oil over medium-high flame. Add capers and sauté for three minutes. Transfer capers to a small bowl; set aside.

In the skillet, briefly heat two more tablespoons of olive oil. Add garlic, anchovies, tomatoes, parsley, and basil; sauté for five minutes. Add olives and sautéed capers. Drain pasta; add to skillet and toss briefly until coated with sauce. Add seasoned breadcrumbs to absorb excess moisture.

After plating, drizzle fresh extra virgin olive oil over warm pasta and sauce to create a burst of mouthwatering aroma. Dust with freshly ground Parmigiano Reggiano and a pinch of red pepper flakes. Serve and enjoy immediately!


About Alici (Ah-lee-chee)

For centuries, alici, or anchovy, have been an important source of protein and characteristic flavor throughout Italy and the rest of the Mediterranean. Unlike lesser-quality anchovy, superior filets are prized for their firm texture and mild, meaty taste. Among fans, it is agreed that paying a bit more for the “good stuff” is money well spent.