THE spicy vodka rigatoni (my version)


  • 1 onion
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 2 cups of parm
  • 2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 1 tube of tomato paste
  • ½ tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 oz vodka
  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • basil leaves (for serving)
  • bag of your favorite rigatoni


begin by boiling a pan of water, season generously with sea salt (should be salty like the sea).

add the rigatoni and cook according to instructions, but should be al dente.

dice the onion, finely slice the garlic and add to a skillet with olive oil and cook on medium heat for about 5 minutes. add a pinch of salt and a few twists of black pepper.

next, add to the skillet the tube of tomato paste and red pepper flakes, cook until the pasta slightly thickens and darkens in color (approx. 5 minutes).

deglaze the mixture with the vodka, scraping up any bits stuck to the bottom of the pan (this is all flavor).

cook for a further 5 minutes until the alcohol has evaporated and the mixture has thickened.

very slowly add in the cream and reduce the heat to a low simmer.

drain the pasta and reserve one cup of pasta water.

add the pasta to the sauce mixture and then add the parm, stir vigorously to combine, adding a splosh of pasta water where needed. the sauce should be thick, emulsified and glossy. serve in your favorite bowl with flaky salt, black pep on the big grind and a few basil leaves to finish.