Introduction: Gramma's Aglio, Olio E Peperoncino... Sort Of
My grandparents lived in Italy during World War II where resources were scarce. My grandmother would rarely speak of it. Actually, the only time she talked about it was when she made this dish. She made it for us as her mother made it for her back in Italy.
It was the only thing she taught me to cook and every time I make it, I am transported to her kitchen, both of us standing on soda crates toasting the garlic. The smell of parsley triggers memories of quail chicks chirping in the yard.
This is a tasty quick & simple 6 ingredient recipe that has gotten my family trough the toughest of circumstances (WWII) and I think my gramma would be happy that I am making it for them now as we deal with supply chain issues.
So here is my family's favorite aglio e olio recipe with some modifications.
Everything about it is a compromise:
Firstly, the original recipe uses cream, but that's not my thing, so we are skipping it all together. Sorry Gramma, I know you liked it really creamy, but its way too heavy for me.
Then some substitutions
Normally, I make my the pasta. However, eggs are still quite difficult to find, so we are skipping the dough and heading for boxed store-bought pasta that's hanging out in the pantry.
Since I am making it for everyone in the family & My sister likes this dish cold so I settled on a box of prefab bowties in place of the usual angel hair or liguinie fini
Olive Oil :(
Normally we use a tasty extra virgin olive oil, but we are using what was left at the store.. Extra light olive oil it is -or as my mum called it, the trash of the trash :( yeah, she's an olive oil snob but it's what we have at the moment
Garlic. The painful compromise
I can't lie, this one hurt my soul a little. I love love L O V E garlic but I never quite embraced the pre-chopped processed versions. Our grocery stores have been out of garlic for a bit so I had to resort to the pre crushed variety. Sad, but it's available.
Technically the red pepper flakes are a substitution. It really should be Peperoncino Rosso, and not the dried cayenne that is readily available here.
- Garlic (lots and lots)
- Olive Oil (1/4 to 1/2 cup)
- Parsley (a bunch finely chopped)
- Red Pepper Flakes
- Parmesan cheese
- Lemon Juice
- Cutting board
- Very sharp knife
Step 1: Prep Parsley
Remove the stems from the parsley and finely chop the leaves
Step 2: Prep Pasta
Take as salted pot of water to boiling ( I sneak in a little parsley and garlic too)
Add the pasta and cook according to package directions
Step 3: Add Olive Oil
While the pasta cooks add the olive oil to a pan
Step 4: Add Garlic
add garlic to the oil and saute
Step 5: Add Red Pepper Flakes
Add red pepper flakes, stir and cook until the garlic is golden brown.
Remove from heat.
Step 6: Drain Pasta
- Drain the pasta when cooked
- Save a bit of the pasta water
Step 7: Add Pasta to Pan
Add the pasta to the pan with garlic and olive oil
Step 8: Add Parsley
Add the parsley
Step 9: Stir
Stir up the parsley in to pasta
Add a bit of the pasta water to facilitate mixing
(you can also add more olive oil if needed)
Step 10: Serve
Serve hot add a topping or seasoning of your choice.
My favourite is finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano while my nephew enjoys extra red pepper flakes.
My sister enjoys the pasta cold with a bit of lemon juice.
Try it your way.
Participated in the
Kitchen Compromises Speed Challenge
2 years ago
This is one of my favorite easy foods - can't go wrong with lemon, chili and garlic :D
Reply 2 years ago