The snow started falling on my way home tonight. We are bracing ourselves to wake up to a winter wonderland tomorrow and the sacred words ‘Snow Day’ were uttered in the staff room today…watch this space!
This recipe is one where you really will have to trust me that the ingredients do work well together! I have to admit that I was dubious when I saw several Italian recipes where they used breadcrumbs and pasta (carbfest!) but the addition of this ingredient adds a lovely crunch, flavour and texture which lifts the dish and makes it one of my new favourites.
I mentioned recently that I can’t seem to get enough fish at the moment so this recipe also ticks that box. I am not usually a huge fan of anchovies and find them a bit too ‘fishy’ but in this recipe, the anchovies are finely chopped and almost melt when you start cooking them meaning you never get a strong-tasting mouthful of fish but they just add a lovely saltiness and depth of flavour to the pasta.
Finally, please do use fresh parsley, not the dried variety, to add colour and vibrancy to your dish.
The below will make dinner for two people.
Enough spaghetti for two people
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
4 or 5 anchovy fillets in oil, chopped
1 chili, finely chopped or a pinch of dried chili flakes
1 piece of toast, whizzed up into breadcrumbs
A small handful of fresh parsley, chopped
Salt and pepper
A handful of Parmesan cheese
How to make it
- Cook your pasta until al dente in boiling water
- While your spaghetti is cooking, heat a good glug of olive oil in a frying pan and add the garlic, anchovies and chili
- Cook on a medium to low heat for about 5 minutes until the anchovies have almost melted, making sure the garlic does not burn
- In another frying pan, heat up another glug of olive oil and when hot, add the breadcrumbs and lightly fry until golden. I also seasoned the breadcrumbs with salt and pepper
- When the pasta is cooked, drain it and add to the pan with the anchovies in
- Tip over the breadcrumbs and add the fresh parsley
- Mix well and serve
- I finished mine off with a generous sprinkling of Parmesan cheese
This is simple Italian cooking, using only a few ingredients but with lots of flavour. I was pleasantly surprised and will definitely be making this again!