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Lunch: pasta with anchovies

Ingredients:

  • dried long pasta (I like thin spaghetti for this)
  • 2oz. tin of anchovies in oil
  • crushed aleppo pepper (or crushed red pepper)
  • garlic
  • arugula
  • salt and pepper

Heat water  (with a generous couple of pinches of salt added to it) to boil pasta and put pasta in once water comes to a boil.  In the mean time, in a frying pan, heat olive oil, roughly chopped garlic, anchovies, aleppo pepper, and cracked black pepper over super low heat.  The anchovies should end up disintegrating into the oil. Make sure the heat is low enough not to brown the garlic.

When the pasta still has some bite left, take it out with a pair of tongs, turn the heat up to high on the frying pan, and throw the pasta in there. It’s ok if you haven’t completely shaken out all the water from the pasta. You want it to be still somewhat wet. Stir and toss pasta in the frying pan, throw in half a cup of pasta cooking water and scrape up any stuck bits on the bottom, turn the heat down to super low again. When the water has turned the anchovies and oil into a thin sauce, stir in the arugula. Turn the heat off, stir some more till the arugula is wilted, add more cracked black pepper, and serve.  By this time, I find that the pasta water and anchovy and oil have made a pretty tasty, savory, sauce to coat the pasta.

I thought I was pretty smart about incorporating arugula into this pasta, but then while I was writing this post, I found that Mark Bittman has a recipe for this too!

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