Thursday, November 17, 2011

Fine! I Give In!

I was reading one of my new cookbooks the other day, and there it is AGAIN: "Spaghetti Aglio E Olio," a.k.a., "Spaghetti with Oil and Garlic" or "Spaghetti with Garlic, Chili, and Oil." I think I've seen this recipe in at least 6 or 7 of my cookbooks; but, have never made it because I thought, "How good can that be?" Well, I sat down my book and made a bowl for my lunch. I have to admit, it is an alluring pasta dish. So simple. So pure. You really do focus on the flavor of the pasta, and the heat is nice, too. This would be elegant as a first-course in an Italian menu, or even just for lunch. This dish is served without cheese, but a tablespoon of seasoned breadcrumbs makes a nice addition.

Spaghetti Aglio E Olio

Serves 6 (as a first-course)


1 pound spaghetti
6 garlic cloves, crushed
1/2-1 teaspoons chili pepper flakes
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil (use the best you've got, it's important here)
2 handfuls flat-leaf Italian parsley, chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Seasoned breadcrumbs, for serving (optional)


Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the spaghetti, until al dente.

Meanwhile, fry the garlic gently in the oil over medium-low heat until the garlic is yellow, about 3 minutes. Add the chili pepper flakes, and turn the heat to low until the pasta is done. Remove the garlic.  As soon as the pasta is done, drain it and tip it into the pan and toss with the oil and parsley. Season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.

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