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Try This Spectacular Rigatoni with Lamb Ragu Recipe From the Hosts of The Pasta Show

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Recently celebrating its 4-year anniversary, The Pasta Show is the only stand-up comedy show where one of the hosts cooks a homemade pasta dinner for the audience, all for $10. Hosted by Kenice Mobley (Bridgetown, SF Sketchfest) and Brian Parise (Last Week Tonight, Montreal JFL), the monthly show regularly features the best talent in NYC alongside high-end homemade Italian dishes cooked by Brian and served to the audience a half-hour before the show.

Brian [L] and Kenice [R], photo by Tucker Mitchell

Featured in Splitsider’s list of “The Best Alt Comedy Shows in Brooklyn” and called “A Must-See Standup Show” by Brooklyn Paper, Broke-Ass Stuart is joining the show’s saucy list of accolades – calling it, according to this writer, a delicious blend of the city’s best comics and authentic Italian flavor.

Fusilli Cacio e Pepe, homemade by Parise

The show is always well-attended and takes place in the intimate upstairs of Frank’s Cocktail Lounge, a black-owned Fort Greene staple that’s been in the neighborhood for  about half a century. In the past it’s featured comedians like Roy Wood Jr, Aparna Nancherla, Judah Friedlander, and Sam Morrill.

The Daily Show’s Dulce Sloan doing that same distinctly Italian hand gesture we saw Kenice doing up top. Pic by Tucker Mitchell.

Big-name and up-and-coming comics performing for just $10 would have been enough to make this show worth calling out, but Brian’s Pasta takes it over the top, not just injecting your night with additional delicious value, but making the whole thing feel like more of a family affair – gourmet food meets gourmet comedy.

We asked Parise to share one of his authentic pasta recipes for our readers, and he responded with this mouthwatering Rigatoni and Lamb Ragu recipe:

If your mouth isn’t watering there’s something wrong with you. Or you’re vegan. OR gluten-free. But those are the only excuses!

– ¾ cup Rosé wine
– Fresh thyme (chopped)
– Fresh rosemary (chopped)
– olive oil
– 1 yellow onion (chopped)
– 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
– 1 pound ground lamb
– 2 TB tomato paste
– 1 (28oz) can crushed tomatoes
– 6 garlic cloves (chopped)
– Salt
– Ground black pepper
– 1 pound of mezze rigatoni
– 4-6 flat anchovy fillets in olive oil
– Locatelli pecorino romano
– 1 tsp sugar

1.) Fill a pot with water and put on high.
2.) In a dutch oven (or similar pot), bring heat to medium-high and cook onions in a
healthy covering of olive oil until translucent (~4/5min)
3.) Add red pepper flakes, salt & pepper, anchovy fillets (don’t worry it won’t taste fishy).
Use wooden spoon to help the anchovies melt into the oil.
4.) Add garlic and cook only for a minute or two until it starts to turn golden (careful not to
5.) Add the lamb, salt & pepper again, fresh thyme & rosemary, and brown the lamb while
breaking it up with a wooden spoon.
6.) Once it is cooked, pour the wine in the pan and scrape up all the brown bits.
7.) Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, 1 tsp sugar, and gentle simmer for about 20
8.) Add a handful of pecorino romano to the sauce and stir. Taste it and you’ll probably
want to add a little more salt or spices to taste.
9.) Heavily salt the water. Taste it and make sure it’s grossly salty like you just swallowed
ocean water. Add the rigatoni and set a timer for 2 mins earlier than the box’s lowest
“al-dente” minute amount. When it goes off, taste it and unless it’s actually crunchy,
take it out. If it’s crunchy, give it another minute.
10.) Before draining the pasta into a colander, pour out some pasta water into a liquid
measure or mug. Then drain the pasta.
11.) Put the sauce and pasta together. If the sauce is a little too thick, stir in a little pasta
water until you get the consistency you want.
12.) Sprinkle pecorino on top, and enjoy.

To find out more about The Pasta Show’s lineups and menu, follow @thepastashowbk on Instagram and sign up for their mailing list by emailing 

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Max Bruno

Max Bruno

Editor, writer, comedian. My Myers-Briggs type is BDSM-SJW.