Garlic, olive oil, parsley, a little chilli with pasta ... what more do you need for a simple and stupidly good quick meal?
Pasta aglio e olio, pasta with garlic and olive oil is as simple and as satisfying a quick pasta dish could be. Yet, there are nuances I never knew until I started doing a little research.
Like most dishes that only have a few ingredients you have to start with the quality of the products you use. Don't skimp here, get good quality pasta. My preference for this is a flat pasta, linguine, fettuccini or tagliatelle, you could extend to pappardelle but I personally find it a little too wide for this. Spaghetti of course is the most common when you go and check the multitude of recipes online. If you can find it, spaghettoni or bucatini an option to standard spaghetti as they are a little thicker. You can of course use short pastas also.
There is quick and easy ways to make this dish, but the recipe below has a little more finesse in creating a creamier sauce. It doesn't take much longer than the simplest of versions, but I have found it to be a great deal more satisfying once done.
Here are a few quick clues, repeated in the tips and alternatives section if you happen to print things out.
- Use less water for cooking your pasta to make the water more starchy as we use some later in the frying pan.
- Salt the pasta water a little more than you may normally and you shouldn't need to add any more later.
- Under cook the pasta by 1-2 mins as it will finish cooking in the frying pan.
- Use parsley stalks, bashed garlic and a few dry chili flakes to infuse the oil olive before the real cooking starts.
- Use quality pasta, any does work fine of course, but for this, the pasta is also part of the experience, not just a delivery mechanism for the garlic and olive oil.
- Add 1 tbls of butter to add a little extra creaminess
So have a go and let me know.