[Photograph: John von Pamer

I have a habit of tossing huge pinches of red pepper flakes into all pasta dishes that cross my stove, so I was immediately drawn to the Bucatini Fra Diavolo in the new Franny's cookbook. Andrew Feinberg, Francine Stephens, and Melissa Clark's recipe takes this classically spicy tomato sauce and freshens it up with close to a full cup of fresh herbs. A hefty pour of olive oil counters the spice, adding glistening decadence to the pasta. It'll look like far too much oil in the pan, but trust in the recipe. You'll want that oil to counter the acidic tomatoes and spicy chiles.

Why I picked this recipe: I'll try any pasta sauce full of red pepper flakes and olive oil.

What worked: This super quick and easy spicy tomato sauce is taken to a new level with tons of olive oil and a garden-full of fresh herbs.

What didn't: Be sure to stir the sauce frequently once you've added the tomato purée to keep splatters (mostly) at bay.

Suggested tweaks: While this pasta is intended to be served hot straight from the pot, I've also enjoyed the leftovers cold from the refrigerator.

As always with our Cook the Book feature, we have five (5) copies of Franny's to give away this week.

About the author: Kate Williams is a freelance writer and personal chef living in Berkeley, CA. She is a contributor to The Oxford American and Berkeleyside NOSH, and she blogs at cookingwolves.wordpress.com.


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