"When I cook at home, I use fish sauce in a lot of Italian food," Quealy Watson says. "I took Latin for four years and read most of Apicius [a collection of ancient Roman recipes]. After seeing the prevalence of garum, a fermented fish sauce, in ancient Roman cooking, using fish sauce in Italian food just made sense. It's essentially anchovy juice." Look for crispy fried garlic at your local Asian market.
10 ounce refrigerated fresh spaghetti noodles
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
5 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2 dried red Chinese chiles or chiles de arbol, seeded and sliced into rings
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon fish sauce
3/8 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Thai basil
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon fried garlic (optional)
Est. added sugars 0g
How to Make It
Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat; add pasta to pan. Cook 1 to 3 minutes or until al dente. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup cooking liquid.
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat; add sliced garlic to pan. Cook 30 seconds or until lightly browned. Add chiles to pan; cook 1 minute or until chiles are fragrant. Stir in juice, fish sauce, and reserved pasta water; bring to a boil. Cook 2 to 3 minutes or until reduced and saucy. Add pasta and salt to pan; toss well to coat. Sprinkle evenly with basil, parsley, and fried garlic, if desired.
My market doesn't carry fresh spaghetti so I used dried whole wheat spaghetti instead. I only used about 1/8th cup of the cooking water. It did seem very oily but the flavor was good. A high quality fish sauce is crucial IMO. I also added in some cooked cubed chicken breast I had left over from dinner last night. Hubby liked it well enough to have it again.
I found a little boring. Mostly just noodles. I added a can of tuna fish because it didn't feel like dinner. However the kids asked for it again so that's a winner. Next time I'll also add spinach and Parmesan.
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