Penne with Afghan Qorma

Recipe courtesy of Chef Yury Krasilovsky

Barilla Chef Yury Krasilovsky developed this version of the classic Afghan nut-based sauce for pasta. Fragrant spices and a hint of jalapeno give the sauce a bold profile.

4 pounds Barilla Penne
12 cloves garlic
1/2 cup butter
4 jalapeno peppers, minced
2 2/3 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
4 cups chopped tomatoes
4 cups yogurt
2 cups fresh cilantro
2 cups unsalted cashews
2 cups vegetable stock
4 onions, chopped
2 2/3 tablespoons ground turmeric
1 1/3 tablespoons ground cardamom
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Salt and pepper
4 limes, zested and juiced
  1. Cook the Barilla® pasta for half the time indicated on the package. Drain pasta and drizzle with some olive oil to prevent from sticking. Place pasta flat on sheet trays or hotel pans and cool in a blast chiller. Alternatively, cool it down in a walk-in cooler. Store in zip lock bags or sealed plastic container; refrigerate and use within several hours.
  2. Puree the cashews, garlic and vegetable stock until smooth.
  3. In a pot, melt the butter and saut├ę the onion, jalapeno and spices until aromatic and lightly browned. Add the cashew puree and tomatoes and bring to a simmer. Cook until thickened slightly, about 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and remove from the heat.
  4. In a bowl, stir together the yogurt, lime zest and juice. Season with a little salt.
  5. For each serving, to order: Reheat about 1 1/2 cups pasta in simmering water. Bring some of the qorma sauce to a simmer in a pan. Drain and add the pasta to the sauce, along with a little pasta cooking water to thin, if necessary.
  6. Plate the pasta and top it with about 2 1/2 Tbsp yogurt sauce and 1 Tbsp cilantro.