It was a hectic day and I couldn’t go shopping for dinner. Luckily, I had some oil-packed anchovies and fresh, well almost fresh, parsley in the fridge. The pantry yielded a half box of spaghetti, garlic, and olive oil.
What to make was obvious: another dish from my childhood that I actually hated then but love now: pasta acciughe, or spaghetti with anchovies.
Spaghetti with Anchovies (Serves 2)
4 Tbs olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced fine
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
5 or 6 oil-packed anchovies
2 Tbs fresh Italian parsley
8 oz spaghetti
Fresh black pepper
- While the water starts to boil for the pasta, put the olive oil, garlic, and pepper flakes in a pan and poach over low heat for about 5 minutes, stirring and making sure the garlic takes on no color.
- Start cooking the pasta, according to package directions for al dente.
- Add the anchovies to the pan, smashing them with the back of a wooden spoon until they dissolve into the oil. Add 1 Tbs of the the parsley and cook for just a couple of minutes. Remove from the heat.
- When the pasta is done, transfer it with tongs to the pan with the sauce. Add another tablespoon of parsley, a few grinds of fresh black pepper, and toss to coat the pasta. If too dry, add a tablespoon or so of the pasta water.
Serve on warmed plates.
This dish is sometimes served with toasted breadcrumbs, which is fine if you want a heavier dish.
Another version of this dish can be found in Chez Panisse Pasta, Pizza, Calzone. Here a link to the recipe online.
Wine Paring: Lacryma Christi Rosso, Nero d’Avola, Syrah