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Rigatoni Arrabbiata

A spicy tomato sauce filled with loads of garlic, crushed fennel seeds, and chili flakes makes it incredibly delicious and thankfully easy to make! 

Rigatoni Arrabbiata

I’ve had this Ina Garten recipe saved for a long time and I’m so glad I finally decided to give it a try. It always makes me happy when a recipe calls for ingredients I have on hand and this is one such recipe. I was intrigued with Ina’s version of this classic Italian sauce because she poaches a bunch of garlic cloves in olive oil for 10 minutes until softened then blends them with the tomatoes before simmering everything together. She also adds crushed fennel seeds to her version which I think made the sauce extra special. My husband, kids, and I sat around our family room and ate bowls of this pasta for a recent family lunch. We all thought it was really delicious, filling, and so flavorful–it disappeared quickly. This rigatoni arrabbiata paired nicely with an Italian salad and some freshly baked bread.

Rigatoni Arrabbiata

How to Make Rigatoni Arrabbiata

In a medium Dutch oven over medium-low heat, warm the olive oil and garlic cloves together, stirring occasionally, for 10-12 minutes, or until the garlic has softened and is lightly golden brown.

Meanwhile, drain the tomatoes and place them in a food processor; pulse until they are roughly chopped.

Remove the softened garlic cloves with a slotted spoon and place them in the food processor with the tomatoes; pulse until the garlic is chopped. Pour the tomato mixture into the same Dutch oven that has the olive oil. Add the remaining tomato juice, wine, crushed fennel seeds, and crushed red pepper flakes and whisk until well combined. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. After simmering, add the chopped basil then taste the sauce and season with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a full boil and cook your pasta per instructions.

Two minutes before the pasta is al dente, using a large slotted spoon, lift the pasta out of the boiling water and add it directly to the sauce. Add two tablespoons of pasta cooking water, if needed. Toss the pasta well and simmer in the sauce for 2-3 minutes, or until the pasta is al dente.

Ladle into bowls and serve immediately with extra basil and freshly grated parmesan cheese. Enjoy.

Rigatoni Arrabbiata

Rigatoni Arrabbiata

Rigatoni Arrabbiata

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Course: Main
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 4
Author: Adapted by Pam - For the Love of Cooking / Original by Ina Garten

Equipment

Ingredients

  • cup good olive oil
  • 12 whole cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 1 (28 oz) can of San Marzano tomatoes
  • tbsp dry red wine
  • 1 tsp whole fennel seeds, chopped
  • ½ tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 tbsp fresh basil, chopped + more for serving
  • Sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste
  • Parmesan, freshly grated, for serving
  • 8 oz rigatoni

Instructions

  • In a medium Dutch oven over medium-low heat, warm the olive oil and garlic cloves together, stirring occasionally, for 10-12 minutes, or until the garlic has softened and is lightly golden brown.
  • Meanwhile, drain the tomatoes and place them in a food processor; pulse until they are roughly chopped.
  • Remove the softened garlic cloves with a slotted spoon and place them in the food processor with the tomatoes; pulse until the garlic is chopped.
  • Pour the tomato mixture into the same Dutch oven that has the olive oil. Add the remaining tomato juice, wine, crushed fennel seeds, and crushed red pepper flakes and whisk until well combined. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • After simmering, add the chopped basil then taste the sauce and season with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste. 
  • Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a full boil and cook your pasta per instructions. 
  • Two minutes before the pasta is al dente, using a large slotted spoon, lift the pasta out of the boiling water and add it directly to the sauce. Add two tablespoons of pasta cooking water, if needed. Toss the pasta well and simmer in the sauce for 2-3 minutes, or until the pasta is al dente. 
  • Ladle into bowls and serve immediately with extra basil and freshly grated parmesan cheese. Enjoy.
     
DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE?Tag @4loveofcooking on instagram and hashtag it #4loveofcooking

 

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7 Comments

  1. Your family is really lucky having you cook for them. I just love your everyday meals! This looks mouthwatering, Pam.

  2. I just saw that this calls for TWELVE garlic cloves and I am HERE FOR IT! My kind of pasta.

  3. This sounds really good with the addition of fennel in there — would never have thought of that. I will definitely try it!!

  4. Looks delicious Pam and pretty fancy for lunch.

  5. A fabulous recipe. I just discovered a product, cause I kept hearing about fabulous tomatoes from New Jersey. On Amazon I found a case of Jersey crushed tomatoes, and they’re so good. There aren’t any seeds, and You don’t have to deal with removing the seeds from the whole san marzano tomatoes. Super ripe and flavorful! Thought you might want to check it out.

    1. Mimi,

      Thanks! I’ll check out those tomatoes.

      -Pam