Recipe: Spicy Quinoa Puttanesca

Puttanesca is rumoured to have originated among Napoli’s nightwalkers. No surprise there. This sultry, spicy, aromatic red sauce of olives, capers and garlic is scandalously good. White the Oldest Professionals paired this kick-in-the-pants sauce with pasta, we’ve got a few tricks of our own. We’ve swapped noodles out for quinoa, the numero uno protein provider. There’s nothing scandalous here… just two ladies of the night enjoying a seductively delectable bowl of quin-HO-a.


Puttanesca Sauce

1 tbsp olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, diced
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 tsp chopped fresh thyme
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup Kalamata olives, pitted
1/2 cup store-bought roasted red peppers, drained and chopped
1 tbsp capers, rinsed and drained
1 (28 oz) tin diced tomatoes
2 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley


2 cups water
1 cup quinoa


1. For the sauce, in a large saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook 5 minutes. Add garlic, cooking 30 seconds. Stir in tomato paste, thyme, red pepper flakes, sea salt, black pepper and white wine, cooking 1 minute. Add olives, roasted red peppers, capers and diced tomatoes. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium and cook 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and stir in parsley.

2. Meanwhile, to cook the quinoa, in a medium saucepan, combine water and quinoa. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low and cook uncovered for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and combine with puttanesca sauce.

Serves 4-6


Authors of bestselling cookbooks Bite Me and Bite Me Too, saucy sisters Julie Albert and Lisa Gnat love eating, feeding, entertaining and dishing up easy recipes and forkin’ fun at