This pasta alla vodka recipe, adapted form a chef Rocco Dispirito, might take you by surprise when you realize it’s missing one very important ingredient…. the vodka! Rocco explains vodka contains a lot of calories, but not a lot of flavor. Alcohol, however, is one of 3 flavor carriers (along with water and fat), but its absence is replaced by the the addition of heavy cream, which not only adds a bit of luxury, but it rounds out the flavors beautifully.
Rocco’s Pasta alla Vodka
makes 4 servings
8 ounces your favorite shape pasta
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (or more to taste)
3/4 cup jarred fire-roasted red peppers, drained and chopped
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese
1 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
In a 6-quart stockpot, bring 8 cups of water and 1/2 ounce (15 grams or 2 1/2 teaspoons) Morton’s Kosher salt to a boil; add pasta and continue to boil until al dente, stirring occasionally.
In a large skillet, heat olive oil and crushed red pepper flakes for 1 minute, then add sauce, chopped fire-roasted peppers and cook, stirring frequently, until heated through.
Stir in cream, cheese, and simmer for 5 minutes.
Remove from heat, stir in fresh basil, and serve immediately.
adapted from Rocco DeSpirito Now Eat This