Saturday, September 1, 2012

The best & easiest pasta recipe ever

Earlier this week, I promised to provide you with the easiest pasta recipe ever. So, here you go: This is not only the easiest, but also the best pasta recipe for Spaghetti al pomodoro for two people.

You need:

A 500 gr package of Spaghetti
(go for an Italian brand like Barilla or De Cecco. If you have any chance, buy them at an Italian importer, cause they make the pasta differently for different countries - in Canada e.g. the pasta is more doughy and it's a lot harder to cook it perfectly "al dente")

About 4 tomatoes
(or, if the season's not right a can of tomatoes, preferably "pelati")

Half an onion

1 garlic clove

Olive oil "extra vergine" (Actually, for cooking a lower quality level of olive oil would do it, too. But seen that I love adding another shot of oil to the pasta when it's done, I prefer this best of all olive oils)

Salt & pepper

You don't need any cooking skills in order to do the following:

Take a large and a small pot. The large one, you fill with water and add a handful of salt (yes, right, it takes a lot of salt). Put it on the stove at the highest temperature and cover it with a lid.
While the water is getting heated up, mince the onion and garlic and chop up the tomatoes. Put the small pot on the stove, and cook the onion and garlic in olive oil until they soften and turn goldish-brown. Then add the tomatoes, season to taste with salt and pepper and let the whole thing cook at medium temperature until the pasta is done.
When the water is boiling, put the Spaghetti in the pot and cook them as long as indicated on the package. It is important though to stir the pasta resolutely in the beginning, so it doesn't stick together. And you do wanna start trying single noodles 2 minutes before the indicated cooking time is over, to make sure it turns out "al dente" (= literally means "to the tooth" and refers to the texture of the pasta, that should show a slight resistance in the center when chewed). Once, you think the pasta has the ideal consistency, strain it and add a shot of olive oil.
Mix it up with the tomatoe sauce and here you go: super easy, super delicious Spaghetti al pomodoro!

A couple tips:
  • In order to make sure, whatever you cook turns out the way you like it, you have to taste it over and over again throughout the whole cooking process and then change it if it's not there yet!
  • There is nothing you can do, once you find out in the end, that the pasta is not salty enough. So make sure, there is a lot of salt in the water, you even might wanna taste the water, that should remind you of seawater. If then, the pasta turns out oversalted, wash it down with warm water after cooking (that might not take away all the saltiness, but at least make the pasta edible).
  • Sky really is the limit! You can modify this recipe according to your taste and cravings: Use more or less onions and garlic. Add whichever herbs you feel like, rosemary, thyme, oregano, basil, parsley...Add olives. Add capers. Spice it up with chilli. Add ricotta. Chop up some mozzarella and spread it over the pasta. Use your imagination!

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