Saffron-Infused Fra Diavolo Sauce and Tagliatelle

Saffron-Infused Fra Diavolo Sauce and Tagliatelle
  • 4Servings


  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • A good pinch saffron threads (20 to 24 threads)
  • 2 tablespoons EVOO (extra-virgin olive oil)
  • 1 fresh chile pepper, such as red cherry or fresno, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped or grated
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme
  • Salt and pepper
  • A generous splash dry sherry
  • 1 28 ounce can italian tomatoes
  • A few leaves basil, torn
  • 1 pound seafood (I use butterflied medium shrimp and small pieces of whitefish or flaked crabmeat)
  • 1 pound egg tagliatelle or other long-cut pasta of choice


Place a large pot of water on to boil for the pasta. Place the chicken stock and saffron in a small pot, bring to a bubble, lower the heat and simmer gently.

In a large skillet, heat the EVOO, 2 turns of the pan. Add the chile pepper, garlic, shallots and thyme; season with salt and pepper. Cook over medium heat, stirring to soften, for 5 minutes. Stir in the sherry, then add the tomatoes and crush with a masher or spoon. Add the saffron-infused stock and the basil and bring to boil over high heat. Lower the heat to medium and cook until the sauce is reduced, 10 to 12 minutes. Add the seafood, cover the pan and cook the seafood through, 3 to 5 minutes.

Just before you add the seafood to the skillet, salt the pasta water, add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain the pasta and toss with the sauce to combine. Serve in shallow bowls.