This pasta dish is so impossibly simple that I’ve been umming & ahhing over whether it actually warrants a recipe post. However, since the result is so disproportionate to the effort required I felt it would be almost criminal to deprive you all of such a wonderfully easy go-to meal.
My affection for this dish reached it’s zenith during my time in Italy this summer gone. I was tiring of pasta doused in rich tomato or creamy sauces (however delicious they may be) & craved something simple & straightforward. Thus I turned (almost daily) to spaghettini aglio, olio e peperoncino – simply put – spaghetti with garlic, oil & chilli.
For an extra helping of carbs, I finish off this dish with a scattering of toasted breadcrumbs.
200g spaghetti // 2 garlic cloves; minced // 1 red chilli; finely chopped // 10g flat leaf parsley; finely chopped // 30g breadcrumbs (I make my own by whizzing up any leftover bread in the food processor & then stashing it in the freezer until required) // 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil // salt & pepper
Start by pre-heating your oven to 180°. Next, bring a saucepan of water to the boil & chuck in your spaghetti. The rest of the prep can simply be done in the time it takes to the cook the pasta – what a result!
Toss your breadcrumbs in a tbsp of the olive oil, scatter over a baking tray that has been lined with parchment paper & pop into your pre-heated oven. These should be crisp & golden within about 6 minutes but check on them from time to time to make sure they’re not burning.
Just before the pasta is cooked (I tend to prefer mine al dente) heat up the remaining olive oil in a saucepan, add the chilli & garlic & allow to sizzle for a couple of seconds – making sure that your garlic does not burn so as to avoid a bitter taste. Quickly drain your pasta before adding it, along with the parsley, to the saucepan. Toss everything together so that the spaghetti is slick with the infused oil. Plate up your pasta & garnish with the golden breadcrumbs, Buon appetito!
When you drain your pasta make sure to retain a little of the cooking water. This will keep your spaghetti loose & prevent it from drying out.