Straddling, as I do, two cultures, there are bound to be some culinary cross-overs. Such a cross-over, of sorts, happened last year with me and my Orthodox Jewish friends, the majority of whom are located in the ‘Bathurst between Lawrence and Wilson’ area of Jewish Toronto or, as I call it, The Heart of The Old World.
One day, conversation turned to food (yeah, I know… Jews talking about food. Shocking, right?) and someone asked me “When you cook for yourself, as opposed to putting on a dinner party or a Friday night Shabbes dinner for other people, what do you prepare?” In response, I gave a brief off-the-cuff description of my own version of Spaghetti alla Puttanesca.
I use a variation of the standard puttanesca sauce as a nice change of pace from regular tomato sauces. As such, while many people add tomatoes (or even spaghetti sauce), I generally leave them out when cooking for myself. Also, while I liked hot and spicy foods in my youth, these days I omit the dried chili pepper flakes. The result is a ‘sauce’ of garlic, sweet onions, black kalamata olives, anchovy fillets  and capers sautéed in olive oil and served with pasta and either parmesan or romano cheese (or a combination of both). I sometimes sprinkle it with freshly chopped Italian flat parsley or add a sprig of fresh basil. My friends loved the sound of it and urged me to make it for them one day.
I was then asked what ‘puttanesca’ meant. I explained that it referred to something done in the style of a ‘professional girlfriend’ of the type that I might encounter at court in my role as a criminal defence lawyer. As a relatively simple dish which can be made quickly and easily, it is the ideal meal for a ‘busy working girl.’ After a second or two for the penny to drop and a communal “oh!” of understanding, another friend of mine said “So basically, it’s Pasta Zona!” 
Ever since then, I have cooked and served Pasta Zona on many occasions for my frum friends and their families. So far, thank goodness, it has received rave reviews.
In fairness, many of the women still whisper to me, “You’ve GOT to come up with a better name for this dish!”
 Anchovy fillets look and taste like salty eyebrows. Those who prefer the taste but not the texture of anchovies might want to substitute nampla, a southeast Asian fish sauce which is basically anchovy-flavoured water with a bit of salt.
 Zona is the Hebrew word for prostitute. For example, Rachav (often spelled ‘Rahab’ in Christian bibles) who hid the Israelite spies in Jericho, thereby saving them, herself and her entire family; the women who brought their ‘child custody dispute’ before King Solomon; and even Judah’s daughter-in-law Tamar (albeit pretending to be one and in a ‘one time only’ capacity). Interestingly enough, despite their zona-related activities, both Tamar and Rachav figure prominently in the lineage of the Jewish messiah (may he come speedily and in our days)!