National Linguine Day | Pasta Aglio e Olio
I woke up this morning with the realization that I’m almost done with September and therefore only have 3 months left to cook for! Behind the scenes, I cook like a maniac just to stay ahead of the actual food holiday. Yeah, I do sometimes bring recipes to you late, but they always show up and everything will definitely be completed by NYE. It’s really not that far away.
Waiting in the wings are recipes for: Veggie Fajita Bowl (Guacamole Day), Biscuit Apple Dumplings (Apple Dumpling Day), Turkey Burgers with Goat Cheese (Cheeseburger Day), a rum punch, some pecan cookies, and a nice butterscotch sauce that you’ll want to just eat right out of the jar, no ice cream required.
October will begin with some homemade cookies, which sounds pretty awesome to me.
For now, though, let’s get into today’s food holiday – National Linguine Day!
Easily the dish I make most often in my house, Pasta Aglio e Olio just means pasta with olive oil and garlic. Simple as that. Add some vegetables (I used broccoli this time around, but also love the dish with brussels sprouts), red pepper flakes, lemon juice, and cheese and you got it.
And for you Italian folks who know better, I know, I know that it’s traditionally not served with cheese, but when I have pecorino romano in my home, I can’t help it! It’s an addiction to not only grating the fresh cheese, but the taste of it on hot pasta. Therefore, my pasta aglio e olio has some on it, but if your loved ones are traditional sticklers, leave it off. 🙂
At the end of the day, a pasta dish doesn’t get any more simple. But because of that, it should be done right, with a great balance. It’s hard to make a bad dish from pasta aglio e olio, but you might find that you have to adjust for your preference on any of the ingredients. I sometimes do more olive oil, sometimes less. Sometimes I overload with garlic and red pepper flakes, and sometimes they’re minimal. As long as you have the olive oil and garlic to your liking, you’re solid.
Pasta Aglio e Olio
- 1 pound cooked spaghetti, plus 1 cup of the pasta cooking water
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 8 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 bunch broccoli florets
- 2 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
- Kosher salt
- Juice of 1/2 a lemon
- 1 tsp lemon zest
- Pecorino romano
- Set a large pot of salted water to boil for the pasta. Add the pasta to cook when ready.
- Meanwhile, heat another pot to boil with salted water. Add the broccoli and cook until al dente. Remove broccoli from hot pot and immediately place in bowl of ice water. Remove broccoli from ice water, pat dry, and set aside until cool enough to handle. Once cool enough to handle, separate the florets from the stems and slice the stems.
- Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large saute pan. Add the garlic, sliced broccoli stems, and red pepper flakes. Lower the temperature as needed so the garlic doesn't burn. It should just be lightly sizzling. Add 1 cup of pasta cooking water and a pinch of kosher salt, swirling in pan for 1-2 minutes.
- Add the broccoli florets, pasta, and lemon juice and zest, tossing with tongs to coat everything well.
- Serve immediately with grated pecorino romano on top.