Pappardelle with harissa, black olives, and capers

Try this delicious, inventive take on a tomato-y, puttanesca style pasta if you’re short on time and want a dish with lots of flavor. Also, don’t forget the yogurt, it adds great tang. Adapted from Simple by Yotam Ottolenghi.


  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 3 T harissa
  • 14 oz cherry tomatoes, halved (note: you can use whatever kind of tomato you have, just cut into small pieces)
  • 1/2 c pitted kalmata olives (note: I had extra tapenade lying around and threw some of that in)
  • 2 T baby capers
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 3/4 c water
  • 3/4 c parsley, roughly chopped
  • 1 lb dried pappardelle pasta (or other wide flat pasta)
  • 1/2 c Greek yogurt


  1. Bring a large pot of water to boil.
  2. Heat oil in a large sauce pan over medium high heat. Once hot, add the onion and fry for 8 minutes, until soft.
  3. Add the harissa, tomatoes, olives, capers, and 1/2 t salt. Continue to fry for 3-4 minutes, stirring frequently, until the tomatoes start to break down.
  4. Add the water and stir to mix thoroughly.
  5. Once boiling, decrease the heat to medium-low, cover the pan, and simmer for 10 minutes.
  6. Remove the lid and continue to cook for 4-5 minutes, until the sauce is thick and rich.
  7. When the sauce is done, stir in 1/2 c of the parsley and set aside.
  8. As sauce is simmering, cook pappardelle according to the package instructions, until al dente. Drain well and toss with a bit of oil to prevent sticking.
  9. Return the pasta to the pot and combine with harissa sauce.
  10. Serve with a spoonful of yogurt and extra parsley.

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