Friday, 21 November 2008

penne alla vodka

This Nigella Lawson recipe comes from straight from March 2007’s issue of delicious magazine. It was a really simple dinner to make and tasted wonderful.

I had wanted to make it ever since I bought the magazine but Jonas kept insisting that vodka with pasta would be terrible. Having eaten Penne alla Vodka in Italy, I knew it wasn't some insane idea Nigella had cooked up on her own so I was confident it would be very tasty.

It was.

He liked it.

I will never listen to him again.

Penne alla Vodka
Recipe by Nigella Lawson from
delicious. Serves 8 – 10.


1 onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 garlic clove, crushed
2 x 400g can crushed Roma tomatoes
2 tablespoons pouring (thin) cream
800g (4 ½ cups) penne rigate pasta
½ cup (125ml) vodka
60g unsalted butter
Grated parmesan, to serve


1. Heat olive in a large frying pan over medium-low heat. Add onion, garlic and salt. Cook for 10 minutes until onion softens and begins to caramelise.

2. Add tomatoes and their juices. Simmer over medium-low heat for 15-20 minutes until the liquid has reduced and thickened.

3. Add cream, season well with salt and pepper, then remove from heat.

4. Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a large pan of salted boiling water according to packet instructions.

5. Drain pasta then return it to the saucepan. Add vodka, butter and salt to taste. Gently mix until butter has melted.

6. Add the tomato sauce and mix to coat pasta.

7. Transfer to serving bowls and top with parmesan.

This is my contribution to Ruth’s Presto Pasta Nights, an event I love participating in but unfortunately I haven’t been eating much pasta or noodles lately.

This week it's hosted by Nilmandra of Soy and Pepper, a blog I hadn't heard of before but through this event I have now wandered through many of her posts and become a big fan.



  1. With vodka, this has to be super delicious.

  2. I've made this before and it is wonderful. One of my favorites!

  3. Hee hee this dish sounds tastyyy and looks very good too! GOod thing you didn't listen to Jonas on this one.

  4. Can never go wrong with Nigella! Thanks for sharing with Presto Pasta Nights.

  5. She has wonderful recipes! Thanks for sharing this. TThere are folks out there who don't have her books and they will appreciate your sharing.

  6. I have always loved penne alla vodka! I know that your boy is vegetarian, but if you ever have the chance to make it again for some meat-eating friends, I love to sauté some pancetta with the onions. It gives the sauce a whole new dimension and cuts some of the creaminess.

  7. Yum! I've not heard of using vodka in pasta but this looks delicious!

  8. Hi! Hopped in from PPN! :) I have tried using white wine but not vodka in my pasta. This is another interesting ingredient to add. I'm sure this is delicious!


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