When work took me to Spain, as well as Portugal, for the first time, the first little meal I had was a plate with small toasts with piquillo peppers, anchovies and black olives. I thought, this would be great on spaghetti! (You can take the Sicilian-American to Spain, but...) Viva Spanish spaghetti, one of my new faves.
Makes: 4 servings
Prep: 15 mins
- 1 pound spaghetti
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO)
- 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 6 - 8 canned anchovy fillets or 3 teaspoons anchovy paste
- 8 - 10 jarred piquillo peppers, drained, or 4 roasted red peppers
- 1 cup loosely packed pitted black olives, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup slivered or sliced almonds, toasted
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt it, add the spaghetti and cook until just shy of al dente (the spaghetti will continue to cook in the sauce for a minute or two). Drain, reserving a ladleful of the pasta cooking water.
- While the pasta is working, in a large, deep skillet, heat the EVOO, 4 turns of the pan, over medium heat. Add the garlic and anchovies and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, until the garlic is tender and the anchovies are melted, about 5 minutes.
- Using a food processor, process the piquillos into a paste, 1 minute. Stir the piquillos into the garlic-anchovy oil and warm through; season with pepper.
- Stir the reserved pasta cooking water into the sauce. Toss the pasta and sauce together for a minute or two to allow the pasta to soak up the sauce. Toss in the olives and nuts and transfer to a platter or 4 shallow bowls.
- Bodegas Felix Sanz Torrevillar Garnacha 2005 (Spain)