Penne alla vodka

By Stefano Faita
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  • 454 grams penne pasta
  • 1 cup frozen peas (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 1/4 cup vodka
  • 1-3/4 cups pureed tomatoes (passata)
  • 1/2 cup to 1 cup whipping cream
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • Hot pepper flakes, to taste
  • Freshly grated parmesan, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 cup fresh diced tomatoes, to garnish (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley, to garnish


  1. Bring large pot of boiling water to a boil. Generously salt.
  2. Add pasta and cook until al dente. If using peas, just before draining the pasta, add the peas, they will cook with the residual heat.
  3. Meanwhile, in skillet over medium heat, add olive oil and butter. Add garlic and cook until softens and turns lightly golden, about one to two minutes.
  4. Add oregano and hot pepper flakes.
  5. Remove pan from heat and add vodka.
  6. Return pan back to heat and let vodka reduce for one to two minutes. Add tomato puree and bring to a boil.
  7. Add cream and reduce to simmer, let simmer, until sauce thickens, about five to ten minutes.
  8. Add pasta. Add some of pasta water to loosen, if needed. Toss to combine.
  9. Finish with freshly grated Parmesan. Garnish with diced tomatoes and chopped parsley.


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