spaghetti aglio olio peperoncino

I know I haven’t posted in a couple of weeks, but things have been busier than usual; the pace of life has shifted ever so slightly—things are happening faster, and things are just happening in general. I’ve taken time to absorb them all and just the enjoy the process.

We’ve had news of new work and interesting projects, an ongoing search for a home, a birthday (with lots of cake), and the arrival of our beautiful baby nephew, Oliver.

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When life is pretty perfect—and when it demands that you be present—I don’t like to spend too much time preparing fussy meals. This is a super-quick and easy pasta, and my absolute favorite go-to when I’m short on time but want something comforting that packs a lot of flavor. It takes hardly any effort, and you really do just need four ingredients (five if you add parmesan).

I almost feel bad calling this a recipe, but it is just that, and it’s how I love to cook—simple, easy, quick meals with a lot of flavor and heart.

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Spaghetti with Oil, Garlic, and Chili

I like the level of spice in this dish to be medium-hot, but if you like it milder or spicier, you can decrease or increase the quantity of chili indicated to your liking.

Serves 2

  • 75 ml (⅓ cup) extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 tsp chili flakes
  • 250 g  (about 9 oz) spaghetti (dry pasta)
  • salt to taste
  • parmesan cheese (optional)

Gently heat the olive oil in a shallow saucepan. When warm, add the garlic and cook until the garlic barely starts to turn golden, about one minute. Take the pan off the heat, and add the chili flakes. Set aside.

Cook the spaghetti in a large pot of salted boiling water until al dente (about 10 minutes).

Drain the spaghetti, and pour the oil/garlic/chili on top. Stir to combine, and serve warm with parmesan sprinkled on top.