Saturday night was the first night that I cooked a full meal in over a week. Really and truly. I’m sure you think I've forgotten to write food reviews on this supposed food blog but in truth, I've forgotten to cook.
I did not have a plan for what to cook so I asked the kids. To no one’s surprise, they wanted noodles and chicken. Challenge accepted. I decided on roasted chicken and vegetables, changing out the potatoes and squash for roasted carrots, cauliflower, parsnips, and broccoli. But how to incorporate pasta?
I have been wanting to find a good recipe for this dish since I saw the movie Chef a few months ago. I know we’ve already talked about this, but please see this movie if you like food at all. I’m telling you that even if you see it after you’ve had dinner, you will still want to eat at the end of the movie. You will want to run out and find the nearest, most awesome food truck. You might even consider traveling to Portland to watch Chef just so that you can have your choice of food truck. And the soundtrack makes excellent kitchen music.
Back to the pasta. I tried to make spaghetti aglio e olio right after seeing the movie. It was not my best effort. Little did I know that I was not the only person who wanted to try this dish. I did not even think to search for the actual recipe from the movie but it turns out that the recipe is all over the internet. Everyone wanted this pasta. And I will be trying the movie version of the recipe. But for now, I think you should try the Batali version of spaghetti aglio e olio.
I roughly halved the recipe, using a guess at the pasta, five cloves of garlic, and only a quarter of the red pepper flakes because I was serving this to my kids. Good move on the red pepper flakes. Gus loved it, Théa thought it was too spicy. Rob and I thought the seasoning was perfect. The key to success on this one was to take the garlic and oil off of the heat right as the garlic began to brown. When I made this before, I overcooked the garlic, which made the entire dish taste burnt. This time, the dish was infused with a mild garlic flavor but did not taste like something that I was trying to force on Dracula.
I will certainly make this dish again as a side for a nice roasted chicken. I might even make it for lunch for myself on a cold, winter day. Give it a try and let me know what you think.
P.S. This is a great article.