The Assassin’s Spaghetti

vegetarian Serves: 4 Cook Time: 25
This classic dish hails from the Apulia region in Italy. It’s a fairly controversial dish as you have to quite literally burn the spaghetti to get it right, but that adds a depth of flavor to the dish that is unforgettable, just like you are.


  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • Salt, to taste
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 fresh chili peppers, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 24 ounces tomato sauce
  • 1 pound of spaghetti


  1. In a medium pot, bring 1 quart of water to a boil. When it reaches a boil, whisk in the tomato paste and a pinch of salt. Keep it over the heat at a simmer while you start the pasta.
  2. In a medium-sized cast iron skillet, add olive oil and set over a medium flame. Add garlic and chili peppers and let it sizzle for 1 to 2 minutes, then add the tomato sauce and let cook for 2 minutes, or until it reaches a simmer.
  3. Add spaghetti straight to the sauce, laying the noodles as close as possible to the bottom of the pan. Add some of the tomato paste broth to help to submerge the noodles.
  4. Without disturbing the spaghetti (this is very important to create the burnt layer), let cook, adding tomato broth as needed to ensure the spaghetti is permanently submerged, for about 5 minutes. Flip the pasta over (if done correctly, when you flip the pasta over, there will be a burnt layer on top).
  5. Continue cooking in the same way for about 5 more minutes, adding tomato broth as needed as the pasta dries out. Cook until the pasta is al dente, then plate and enjoy!

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