Scammarò: Spaghettini with Olives, Capers and Breacrumbs

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Two plates of spaghetti with nuts and olives on a marble table.

Scammarò is a common pasta dish from Naples. Do you fancy a super tasty pasta dish that is rich in flavor but very easy to prepare? This recipe, with only a few ingredients, is the one.

A plate of spaghetti with olives and pine nuts.

I dont know whether you have been to Naples or not, but the most frequent motto there is Make do with what you have got.” You try to make the best from a few simple things you have.   

Neapolitans (people from Naples) are funny, friendly, open, and yes, a little messy and noisy too. For instance, you mustnt daydream at the stoplight after it turns green, not even a short while as the other drivers will all lean on their horns: Beeeeeeeeeeep sounds continuously– an awful concert! Neapolitans like celebrating every single stoplight with a little music, the sounds of their car horns beeping. Thats the reason why I think it is an entertaining city…. if you understand its culture. 

Italian creativity originated in this city; Neapolitans hardly ever stick to the rules as they usually invent new ones; unfortunately, not all of them are fair. However, their food is great, they respect their traditions, and they have very strong family ties. Family gatherings are frequent; they have huge meals together, and they make super tasty dishes with a few simple ingredients. 

Eating what you have tasted on holiday makes your mind travel 

Tastes and perfumes often take me to my favorite holiday places, which are deep in my heart. 

This is an everyday recipe, not a dish you can easily find in any Italian cookbooks or magazines. A pot of water, some pasta, and a few ingredients from the pantry make this an unforgettable dish that you will make over and over again in your own kitchen.  

When can you eat Scammarò? 

It takes about 15 minutes to prepare, the time to cook pasta. A last-minute dish,” it is as fast as making spaghetti with oil, garlic, and chili peppers, It works perfectly for when you have to throw a dinner together for a few friends. 

Now’s the time to make Scammarò; you will definitely impress your friends and make a few new ones as well. 

A plate of spaghetti with olives and pine nuts.

First the shopping list…

You only need a few simple things which can always be found in every Italian household and in your pantry, as well. 

  • Durum wheat pasta: Every shape fits this recipe, but spaghettini or any long, very thin pasta is the best choice; 
  • Capers: Buy salt-cured if possible. If brined, rinse them well before using;
  • Black olives: Look for brine-cured dark olives (purple if you can); 
  • Anchovy paste gives the dish a strong flavor, or use canned anchovies, rinsed, and mashed. It can be replaced by olive paste for a 100% vegan dish; 
  • Breadcrumbs make this pasta pleasantly crunchy and soft at the same time. It’s the final touch which enriches an already flavorful dish; 
  • Extra virgin olive oil: Choose only top-quality olive oil. No other kinds of oil are allowed; 
  • Pine-nuts are an option, but they make Scammarò a truly better dish.
A cutting board with olives, nuts, and a knife.

How can you keep it?

What can you do with leftover Scammarò? It keeps fresh up to 1 day in the fridge. And then? Add an egg to make a succulent frittata. Enjoy!

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