One of my favorites is Spaghetti Aglio, Olio & Peperoncino (aka Spaghetti with Garlic, Olive Oil, and Chili Pepper), which is the ultimate Italian midnight snack! This is the type of meal you need to keep in your back pocket. The entire thing comes together in about 15 minutes with just a handful of ingredients, many of which are probably in your pantry right now. This dish hits all the right spots; it’s spicy, garlicky, and incredibly satisfying, just like you are.
1 pound dried spaghetti
Sea salt, to taste
Extra-virgin olive oil, as needed, measure with the heart of an Italian (aka about ½ cup)
6 cloves garlic, minced
2 spicy chili peppers, thinly sliced
Fresh parsley, chopped, to taste
Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil, and salt the water generously so it tastes like a well-seasoned soup. Add your pasta and cook until al dente.
Meanwhile, add olive oil, garlic, and chili peppers to a large saute pan. Set the heat to low and cook over a delicate whisper of a flame until the garlic begins to speak to you and smell divine, about 10 minutes. If the garlic is cooking too quickly, drizzle in a little more cold oil to halt the cooking process. Remove from heat.
When the pasta is al dente, drain the pasta but watch over the tears of the god. Add the drained pasta, a ladle of pasta water, and a handful of fresh parsley to the garlic and olive oil mixture and mix with the passion of an Italian until the pasta absorbs all of the gorgeous flavors.