Use store-bought or homemade marinara to create these pasta sauces. (From the March issue of Fine Cooking magazine.)
Basil marinara: Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in saucepan. Pour in 3 cups marinara, bring to boil then reduce heat to a simmer. Stir in 1/4 to 1/2 cup torn fresh basil leaves. Simmer 5 minutes and toss with pasta.
Arrabbiata sauce: Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat in saucepan. Add 1/4 pound finely diced pancetta or prosciutto, 2 teaspoons minced garlic and scant 1/2 teaspoon chili flakes. Cook until garlic is golden, 3 to 4 minutes. Add 3 cups marinara and 1/4 cup torn basil. Simmer until hot and toss with pasta.
Pink sauce: In large saute pan over medium heat, melt 4 tablespoons butter. Pour in 11/2 cups heavy cream. Raise heat to medium high, simmer, stirring often, until sauce reduces to about 1 cup, 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in 1/2 cup marinara and season with salt, pepper and nutmeg. Simmer until hot and serve with pasta.
Vodka sauce: In large saute pan over medium heat, melt 4 tablespoons butter. Saute 1 finely chopped medium onion with 1/4 pound finely diced pancetta or prosciutto until onion is tender. Pour in 1/2 cup marinara and 1/4 to 1/2 cup vodka. Simmer and stir, until sauce is reduced by about 1/4. Stir in 1 cup heavy cream and simmer until heated through. Season to taste with salt, pepper and Tabasco sauce. (Adapted from www.cooks.com.)
Puttanesca sauce: In large saute pan over medium heat, brown 3 crushed garlic cloves in 3 tablespoons olive oil. Mash garlic as it cooks; remove and discard it when it browns. Add 5 mashed anchovy fillets, rinsed and patted dry (or 21/2 teaspoons anchovy paste) into the hot oil and stir until they dissolve, about 30 seconds. Stir in 21/2 tablespoons rinsed capers and 1/4 teaspoon chile flakes and cook 3 minutes. Add 3 cups marinara, 1/2 cup pitted and quartered black olives, 11/2 teaspoons dried oregano and 1/4 cup roughly chopped fresh parsley. Simmer until hot and toss with pasta.
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