Rigatoni Alla Vodka

for the vodka, don’t waste the top shelf stuff, it’s getting boiled and baked and mixed with spicy peppers. FYI: “Peperoncino is the generic Italian name for hot chili pepper, specifically some regional cultivars of the species Capsicum annuum and C. frutescens.” -wikipedia. So any old crushed red pepper is very probably close enough. source: https://youtu.be/Ss6QWL4izP0?t=60


  • 2.5lb plum tomatoes, ripe

  • kosher salt

  • 2cups onions, diced

  • 1bulb garlic, sliced

  • 1/3rd cup olive oil

  • black pepper

  • 1cup vodka*

  • 2tsp dried tarragon

  • 2tsp dried parsley

  • greater than .75tsp peperoncino flakes**

  • 1lb rigantoni

  • .5cup heavy cream

  • .75cup parmigiano-reggiano

  • fresh tarragon


  • in a 6qt pot, bring salted cold water to a rolling boil over high heat. score tomatoes bottoms with an X, plunge into boiling water to blister 1-2 minutes. blanch tomatoes in a bowl of cold water with salt and ice, peel off skin, quarter.

  • dice onions, slice garlic

  • bring 1/3rd cup olive oil to a boil in a pot, add onions, season with pepper and kosher salt. Sautee until just starting to brown (technically not caramelizing, SHEREEN) about 5 minutes.

  • add garlic, sweat about 1 minute.

  • add tomatoes, vodka, season again with salt, vodka, tarragon, parsley, peperoncino, stir

  • bring to a boil, cover, bake at 375degF for 45 minutes.

  • bring a pot of salted water to rolling boil. add 1lb rigatoni.

  • Puree sauce, mix with cream, mix in pasta and simmer. (“several minutes”)

  • serve with grated parmagianno reggiano and peperoncino, peperoncino, and fresh tarragon