Main Dish

Jun 132011

Simple, simple, simple. How much easier can it get? Anchovies, garlic, olive oil, red chilies, basil, chipotle chili powder (optional), salt, pepper, parmesan cheese, and angel hair pasta. Mmmmn. Well, maybe not quite that simple, but the ingredients are easy to keep in the pantry, it’s easy to assemble, and though a good fresh parmesan is not cheap, this dish is relatively inexpensive. So far, so good. And fast. Okay, we’re getting better again. So, what’s next? Let’s assemble our ingredients and get the water for the pasta going.  Oh, and set the table. This really is incredibly fast, once you get started. The salt and pepper mills are already on the table, and I grated up a bunch of fresh parmesan!Steaming frontal stovetop

Did I mention that a really large flat skillet can be a benefit in this (or any) lifestyle? And a pasta pot? This is part of my Neova ware, brought from my sticks and bricks life before we became fulltime RVers. In my honest opinion, good cookware is always beneficial for good cooking. (-: But, I digress. Let’s get back to cooking.

Once your water is boiling, salt it and add in your pasta. I like to break my angel hair in half, carefully, and set it in my colander while waiting for the pasta to boil. Then, when the water is boiling, I pick it up and gently drop portions of it into the boiling water, criss-crossing it as it falls to help keep it from sticking together in clumps. Give it a stir, then set up your ingredients and open your anchovies. Carefully. These little cans are sharp.

Next, prepare your garlic. I have a handy-dandy garlic press that I adore, but having worn one out and always being on the lookout for a replacement, I haven’t seen one like this in ages. You can mince your garlic or use one of the regular garlic presses. Needless to say, we like garlic, we use it a lot, and we use a lot of it. We also like a little bit of heat. As in spicy. You can adjust for your own preferences. Crushed red chilies, dry basil leaves, and chipotle chili pepper await.

Skillet with garlic, chili, and olive oil

Start your skillet heating, over medium high heat, and add in a couple of tablespoons of good olive oil. When the oil gets hot, add in the garlic and the crushed red chilies. As it becomes fragrant, add in the basil and chipotle powder. Stir and enjoy the aroma for a moment or two. Now it’s time to add in the anchovies.

Ingredients ViewSkillet with anchovies added

Closeup with anchovies sizzling

Mash the anchovies with the back of a wooden spoon and stir the garlic and herbs all together. Check your pasta. It should be really close, you only want it al dente. Drain thoroughly and stir it into the skillet, adding a bit more olive oil, as needed, to keep it from sticking badly while you stir and saute’ everything together. Grind some sea salt and black pepper over all, then stir in a couple of handfuls of freshly grated parmesan.  I usually grate about 3 cups of parmesan to have plenty available to top individual servings, too. You are ready to plate.Plated, at the table

Skillet with pasta added

This is so very good. Nick asks for it all of the time. So simple, but he claims it is one of his very favorites! Yummm!! Of course I usually enjoy a salad with, but he doesn’t even ask for hot garlic bread. Winking smile

Finale, fully plated!

List of Ingredients:

8 oz. uncooked angel hair pasta water for boiling pasta
1 – 2 oz. can flat anchovies, in olive oil 8 – 10 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
3 – 5 T good quality olive oil 1 tsp. crushed red chili peppers
1 tsp. dried basil leaves 1/4-1/2 tsp. chipotle chili powder
3/4 tsp. freshly ground sea salt 1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
4 – 6 oz. parmesan cheese, grated Serves 2 – 4