Penne with Tomato Vodka Cream Sauce

January 26, 2011
3 Ratings
  • Serves 6
Author Notes

I obviously did not invent the concept of a vodka pasta sauce. I wish I had, I'm fully qualified. Living in the Florida Panhandle, we have seemingly, endless and reasonably priced access to the freshest seafood. We eat a lot of it and much of that is Gulf shrimp. I've come up with many quick meals that showcase the seafood but this is our current favorite. The credit for this recipe is shared amongst the guy that created the vodka sauce concept, the guys at Cool Fish Market and the shrimp. I just brought them all together. Although this comes together quickly, take your time heating the garlic very gently. - Andra —ourlastsupper

Test Kitchen Notes

There's a good reason why pasta with vodka sauce is a classic: it's comfort food at its finest. Andra's version, with its boozy kick and lovely sprinkling of basil, is elegant enough to make my partner think I had spent hours over the stove, yet simple enough that the sauce took only slightly longer to cook than the pasta. Sadly for me, I don't have the luxury of Andra's Gulf shrimp out here, but my previously frozen ones from Whole Foods worked just fine. I would add a pinch or two of red pepper flakes next time, and believe me, there will certainly be a next time. —mg2157

What You'll Need
  • 1 28 ounce can of tomatoes
  • 8 ounces cream
  • 1/2 cup vodka
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced or crushed
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh, basil
  • 1 1/2 pounds large shrimp, cleaned and deveined
  • 1 pound penne
  1. Bring pot of water to boil.
  2. In a large sauce pan, heat olive oil over medium/low heat and saute garlic just until it releases aroma. Empty can of tomatoes into pot and mash with potato masher. Increase heat to medium/high, add vodka and simmer over medium low heat until thick, about 10 minutes. Add cream. oregano, salt and pepper and simmer over low heat for 10 more minutes. Add shrimp and cook over medium heat until the shrimp are pink, about 6 minutes.
  3. When water comes to a boil, cook penne until al dente.
  4. Combine the sauce and the penne. Sprinkle with the chopped basil and serve.
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1 Review

ourlastsupper February 12, 2011
Thanks MG2157 for reviewing the recipe. I'm glad you liked it! I completely agree with your addition of crushed red pepper.