Chef John’s Aglio e Olio!
Aglio e Olio [AH-lyoh ay AW-lyoh] (garlic and oil) is a romantic, Italian, peasant-style entrée, perfect for a cozy evening together. Pair with a simple green salad and a fantastic, crisp, Pinot Grigio. Great pasta dish for that special evening or family affair!
2 lbs. Spaghetti
1-cup Very good olive oil
8 medium Garlic cloves – finely minced
2 tsp. Salt
1 tsp. Freshly ground black pepper
1 Tbspn Red pepper flakes – or to taste
2 cups freshly grated Parmigiano Regiano cheese
1-cup Good croutons – pulsed into course crumbs
1. Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil.
2. Cook the pasta al dente and drain, saving about 1-cup of the pasta water.
3. While the pasta is cooking, gently warm the olive oil in a large sauté pan, add the garlic and heat just until the garlic turns golden.
4. Add the red pepper flakes and breadcrumbs. Sauté until lightly toasted.
5. Set oil aside until pasta is drained. Place oil back on medium low flame and toss pasta, in the sauté pan, with salt until well coated.
6. If the pasta seems dry add dribbles of the pasta water. Add cheese and just heat through.
7. Serve immediately with a good grind of black pepper, and pass the grated cheese at table. I also like to have a cruet of olive oil on the table so diners may add a drizzle if they wish.
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