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Happy New Year! Yea, I know I’m almost 2 weeks late. But hey, I got busy. In fact I got so busy that I made this delicious dish over a week ago and only now do I have time to write the post.

There are few things in life as good as a big bowl of pasta with a lovely sauce. It’s warm and comforting. Sort of like a hug in a bowl. However, this being a new year and all, we’re trying to cut out some of the bad and increase some to the good. Pasta, bad. Veggies, good. While we’re not giving up gluten or going Paleo, we are introducing new and interesting grains in our diet. Enter the quinoa pasta. What? Don’t make that face. It’s good. I mean really good, surprisingly.

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I’m using a pasta that is a corn/quinoa blend. The ingredients are organic corn flour and organic quinoa flour. That’s it. Since the corn flour is organic I am going to assume that it is non-GMO. I could be wrong, but I don’t see how something that is organic could also be genetically modified. But I also don’t see how Kraft can make a powdered macaroni and cheese that is also “organic.” If you are sensitive to GMO you might want to use a pasta that is 100% quinoa flour or a quinoa/rice blend.

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Other than the pasta the most important ingredient here is the oil. What you need here is a really good olive oil. I’m using a limited reserve first harvest oil. This is not an oil that I would normally cook with, but since the oil is the co-star along with the pasta I decided to go ahead and use it. I am also not heating the oil to a very high heat, which would break it down.

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Aglio Et Olio (Pasta with Oil and Garlic)

  • ¼ cup good quality olive oil
  • 3 cloves of garlic, sliced thinly
  • 2 tsp anchovy paste
  • ½ tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 3 Tble very cold butter, cubed
  • 8 oz spaghetti of choice, cooked according to package directions
  • Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring occasionally until garlic starts to sizzle, about 3-4 minutes. Add anchovy paste and red pepper flakes. Cook until slightly browned. Add cold butter, stirring continuously, until a sauce is formed. Add cooked spaghetti to skillet and toss to coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Top with grated cheese and toss. Serve immediately.

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Notes:

  • I served the pasta with some sautéed kale with lime pickle. You can get the recipe here.
  • Please use the anchovy paste!! I promise you won’t taste the anchovy, but it provides a depth of flavor that you will love.
  • You can also make this dish vegan by omitting the anchovy paste, butter and cheese.
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