Paprika, cumin, and ginger lend their aromatic alchemy to a simple, no-cook tomato sauce. You can use the sauce with a wide range of ingredients (see Variations).
Food & Wine JANUARY 1997
1. In a large glass or stainless-steel bowl, whisk together the olive oil and the lemon juice with the paprika, cumin, ginger, oregano, salt, and pepper. Stir in the crushed tomatoes and the cilantro.
2. In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook the penne rigate until almost done, about 12 minutes. Add the shrimp and cook until it and the pasta are just done, about 1 minute longer. Drain. Toss with the tomato sauce.
Variations: Penne with Mozzarella and Spicy Tomato Sauce: Use 1 pound fresh mozzarella, cut into 1/4-inch cubes, in place of the shrimp. Toss the cheese in at the end.
Penne with Sausage and Spicy Tomato Sauce: Use grilled sausage cut into bite-size pieces in place of the shrimp. Toss the sausage into the pasta with the tomato sauce.
Penne with Grilled Vegetables and Spicy Tomato Sauce: In place of the shrimp, use grilled or sautéed vegetables such as mushrooms, zucchini, eggplant, or green beans, cut into bite-size pieces. Toss the vegetables into the pasta with the sauce.
Wine Recommendation: With its competing spices, strong-flavored cilantro, and acidic tomatoes, this pasta dish calls for a simple Italian white--a pinot grigio, for example.
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