You knew the anchovies were going to make another appearance.
It came time to use up the rest of those anchovies, and at least some of my parsley, in a somewhat traditional pasta dish. I also wanted to use up tomato sauce I had made due to the bunches of cherry tomatoes I keep harvesting from my garden–in late October no less!
It is nice when something comes together I wasn’t expecting. This salty, toothsome dish packed a flavor punch. I ended up using one of the tiny dried out chilis I had on hand, something I also grew in a planter and don’t use very much, because I thought this recipe could benefit from some extra spice. Red pepper flakes add a nice touch in tomato sauce. Since I had fewer anchovy filets available than one of the original recipes suggested, I threw in capers to fill it out.
Pasta Oreganata With Garlic, Anchovies and Tomatoes
Adapted from a combination of Gwyneth Paltrow’s recipe in Bon Appetit and a New York Times recipe
1-2 Cups of chunky tomato sauce, previously made, such as Smitten Kitchen’s fresh tomato sauce
6 anchovy fillets packed in oil, drained
4 Tablespoons of olive oil, divided
4 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
1 dried chili, finely chopped (optional)
1 Tablespoon capers
1/4 Cup plain dry breadcrumbs
1 Tablespoon fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme, finely chopped
Large pinch dried oregano
Freshly ground black pepper
8 ounces of linguine or spaghetti, I use whole wheat
additional chopped parsley leaves
small fresh basil leaves (optional)
Set the oven temperature to 400°. Line a small baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Place breadcrumbs and herbs in a small bowl; season with salt and pepper. Drizzle 1 Tbsp. oil over; stir until mixture resembles damp sand.
Bake until golden brown, 3-5 minutes. Set aside.
Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until al dente. Drain, reserving 1 cup pasta cooking liquid.
Put about 3 Tablespoons of olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat; a minute later, add garlic. Cook garlic so it bubbles gently. When it is lightly browned all over, add anchovies.
Cook, stirring occasionally, for about a minute, until anchovies begin to fall apart. Add capers, if using.
Add tomato sauce and chili. Adjust heat so the sauce bubbles nicely, and cook until mixture cooks down and comes together a little, about 5 minutes. Taste and add salt and pepper as necessary.
Add drained pasta to skillet; toss to coat, adding reserved pasta water by 1/4-cupfuls if dry. Remove from heat; stir in basil. Drizzle with remaining 2 Tbsp. oil. Divide among bowls. Top each with oreganata and extra parsley.
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