Rating: 3.5 stars
105 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 36
  • 4 star values: 20
  • 3 star values: 11
  • 2 star values: 17
  • 1 star values: 21
  • 105 Ratings

Say hello to your new favorite pasta recipe. This one hits all the good notes: creamy, spicy, rich, and saucy. Vodka does more than just add a little booze to the mix—it marries the disparate elements, bringing together the caramelized shallots and garlic with the bright tomato paste and the decadent cream. This makes a big batch, perfect for cold weather dinner parties fueled by red wine and slow-burning candles. Psst…If you want to swap in a different pasta for what you have on hand, make sure to use one that has ridges (like penne) to sop up the sauce.

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Read the full recipe after the video.

Recipe Summary

hands-on:
25 mins
total:
40 mins
Yield:
Serves 6
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Ingredients

Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Cook pasta in a large pot of generously salted water according to package directions for al dente; before draining, ladle 1 cup pasta water into a large, heatproof bowl. Drain cooked pasta. Whisk cream into reserved pasta water. Set aside.

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  • Melt butter with oil in a Dutch oven or other heavy-bottomed pot over medium. Add shallots and ½ teaspoon salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Add garlic; cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Add tomato paste and crushed red pepper; cook, stirring often, until tomato paste starts to darken, 3 to 4 minutes. Add vodka; cook, stirring constantly, until mixture is smooth, about 1 minute.

  • Reduce heat to low and add reserved cream mixture, several grinds of black pepper, and remaining ½ teaspoon salt. Stir until combined, about 1 minute; add pasta and toss to coat. Serve topped with several more grinds of black pepper.

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