Spaghetti allo Scammaro | Simple, Delicious Italian Pasta Recipe
This simple pasta dish from Naples was created as a way to eat when meat and other expensive ingredients were not available. Despite being a "poor" dish, it has an incredibly rich flavor! The combination of raisins with olives and capers give it a wonderful contrast between sweet and sour.
Watch the Pasta Grammar video where we make this recipe here:
For this recipe, you will need:
1/4 cup (40g) raisins
5 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil (plus extra for drizzling as a topping)
Bread crumbs (you can use as much as you like, about 1/2 a cup will do but feel free to use more!)
1/4 cup (30g) pine nuts
1 garlic clove, peeled and cored
2 heaping tbsp. capers
~10 Kalamata olives, halved
5.5 oz. (160g) spaghetti
Fresh parsley, chopped
Place the raisins in a small cup and fill with water so they can soak. Meanwhile, put a large pot of water on to boil.
In a small skillet, add 2 tbsp. olive oil and the breadcrumbs over medium heat. Toast them, stirring frequently, until they begin to turn golden. Set aside for later. In a bare skillet, add the pine nuts and toast them over medium heat for 1-2 minutes. Set them aside (you can pour them into another dish to reuse the pan).
When the pasta water comes to a boil, salt it generously and add the spaghetti. Cook as directed, but for 3 minutes less than the recommended "al dente" cook time.
Put 3 tbsp. of olive oil and the garlic clove into the pan and bring up to medium heat. Drain the raisins and squeeze them dry before adding them into the pan, along with the capers, olives, and pine nuts. Sauté the ingredients for 1-2 minutes, then remove the garlic and add a ladle of pasta water. Let the sauce simmer while the pasta cooks.
When the pasta is ready, use tongs to transfer it into the sauce. Stir all together over medium/high heat until the pasta is al dente to your taste. Continue to add a little pasta water as needed to maintain moisture in the pan.
When the pasta is cooked to your liking, turn up the heat to let the sauce thicken. Be aware that the breadcrumbs will absorb liquid, so we recommend leaving the sauce a little more watery than you might otherwise. Turn off the heat and generously sprinkle the pasta with breadcrumbs and a few pinches of chopped parsley. Stir all together.
Serve immediately, topped with extra breadcrumbs, parsley and a drizzle of olive oil.