Spaghetti Amatriciana … Cheers, to your Jolly Good Health!

Spaghetti all’Amatriciana!


This year my home has been blessed with so many visitors and house guests. Our nephew, George and his dynamic and sparklingly awesome wife

Fun with the girls whilst cooking and beading!

Maddy, together with their son George Jnr have visited on a number of occasions. I am now churning out bracelets, necklaces and angels as a result of these. During one of her visits Maddy needed to stock up and took me shopping at a bead shop – say no more! In a former life I must have been a Jackdaw or Magpie for my

Baubles, bangles, spangles and beads!

eye lights up and my mouth goes onto “auto smile” at the mere glimpse of baubles that have a high bling factor! I never throw a glass jar away – and have a box of naked ones just waiting for some decoration !

Our George is a Tripepi, through and through and although we always attempt a meal at Maddy’s favourite Chinese Restaurant, China Plate and George’s favourite curry spot in Musgrave Road, Little India, he will never pass up the opportunity of a nice big plate of pasta and a laugh with his cuzzies around our table.

My heart sings at the sight of a big bowl of pasta like this …. it means that my table is well and truly full!

Amatriciana sauce originated in the region of Lazio and hails from the town of Amatrice. The dish is traditionally made using dried pork cheek which is called Guancale. As is the case with many Italian dishes, they have been changed over the centuries. This is my version of Amatriciana – the addition of mushrooms, anchovies and capers is my idea of fun and I can’t find Guancale that often in Durban so have substituted with bacon.


The Naughty Girls ……. always found sitting at the back of the classroom! Giggling!

Three bracelets and a few more tequilas later … we were rocking and rolling!

Amatriciana Pasta Sauce

Makes 8 Servings

Preparation is key to the success of any dish!


2Tbs of chopped garlic

2 onions finely chopped

8 anchovies

2Tbs capers

½ tsp of smoked dried chilli (optional)

A handful – of black and green olives deseeded

2 packets of bacon chopped into bite sized pieces

2 sprigs of fresh rosemary

2 packets of sliced or chopped mushrooms

2 glasses of dry white wine

8oog cherry or Rosa tomatoes halved

2 small tins or 1 large tin of plum tomatoes – placed in a bowl and squashed by hand

or you can liquidise them if you prefer a smooth sauce.

1 cup of fresh basil

250ml fresh cream

200ml finely grated pecorino

2 packets of spaghetti


In a large frying pan heat enough olive oil to cover the base of the pan to a high heat

Brown your garlic and onion for 2 minutes

Add the Anchovies and capers and cook until the anchovies have disintegrated

Browning your onion will help avoid indigestion.

Add your bacon, dried chili flakes and rosemary and brown

Add the bacon and fresh sprigs of rosemary.

Add the mushrooms and brown them too

Adding plenty of mushrooms give your sauce bulk … to feed a large family!

So your pan is now laminated with layers of flavour – the browning of the onion, bacon and mushrooms needs to be

lifted off the bottom of the pan and plonked into your sauce.

This is the flavour base of your sauce and is what raises your pasta sauce up to Diva-liscious-ness!

Add a good two glasses of wine and cook until all of the alcohol has evapourated and then add the freshly cut and halved fresh tomatoes, cover with a lid and cook covered for about 5 minutes on a high heat.

Add your fresh tomatoes

This will soften the tomatoes , now add the squashed or liquidised tinned plum tomato, season with salt, I prefer to use a stock cube or two and plenty of black pepper and bring to a boil.

Cook for approximately 30 minutes or until the sauce has thickened slightly and the oil on top of the sauce is red and clear.

Reduce the heat and simmer for about 30 minutes or until the sauce has reduced and thickened.

To Assemble your plates:

Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil and cook your Spaghetti

Drain well and return to the pot – add your cream and stir into the spaghetti.

ALWAYS dress your pasta before serving … naked pasta

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will cling to each other ashamed and naked!

Add half of your Amatriciana Sauce and serve individual portions with a little extra sauce on the top.

I love to serve pasta in very large dishes so that each person can help themselves at the table …. A tavola!!!


Nota Buonissimo!


Italians absolutely NEVER serve cooked pasta without some sauce or at the very very least, a little olive oil ON IT to dress it. The moment that the cooked pasta comes out of the water it’s been boiled in and is drained is the very moment that is perfect to add your sauce.

This is when the pasta sucks in some of your wonderful sauce and morphs from a bowl of plain white pasta to a bowl of pure heaven.

If you don’t add some sauce or fresh cream or olive oil OF COURSE THE PASTA WILL ALL STICK TOGETHER!!

The poor strands of pasta are clinging to each other for dear life – Naked and Ashamed of their nudity!

Haibo! Shame on You!

Serve with a sprig of fresh basil!

Always dress your pasta before serving it!!!!

Have a great day

And as always

Buon Appetito



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Scorpio, RED WINE, Dalmatians, VINO, my men, Mamma Estraordinaria, massive pots of pasta, la famiglia, candle light, designer Handbags, Adult Survivor, Red Lipstick, writing, drumming, painting, red RED and Pasta .... lots of it!