God how I love anchovies. Ever since discovering bagna cauda I haven’t been able to curb my craving for them for long, often going out of my way to run to the market to pick up ingredients for it as an impromptu lunch or dinner. The combination of salty anchovies and garlic is so sublime that I honestly can’t formulate enough words to say.
I came across the recipe for Midnight Pasta a while back and made it almost immediately, falling in love with those familiar flavors of briny fish and garlic. Despite the name, I would eat this whenever desire strikes, which is often with intensity.
Here’s a riff off of that pasta and bagna cauda with much more anchovies and spice plus the addition of broccolini, which to me, is the perfect sponge for absorbing all the delectable bits of salty goodness.
Farro spaghetti with anchovies, garlic + broccolini
I’ve used farro here because I wanted extra nuttiness in the pasta but you can always opt to switch it with whole wheat or regular pasta noodles. The Turkish Aleppo peppers give this a nice fruitiness that compliments the olive oil but if you don’t happen to have some laying around, pinch in some red pepper flakes instead but cautioning to use only half a teaspoon as they are hotter.Â
Makes enough for 2 – 4 lovelies, as a lunch
8 ounces farro spaghetti
2 ounces anchovies packed in olive oil, a standard box
3 tablespoons fruity extra virgin olive oil
4 garlic cloves, chopped roughly
2 tablespoons capers, chopped roughly
1 teaspoon dried crushedÂ AleppoÂ pepper
1/2 bunch broccolini, florets only
Parmesan cheese shards, to serve
Cook the noodles in boiling salted water until al dente, about 6-8 minutes. Drain and dump into a bowl. Drizzle with a smidge of olive oil and season with salt and pepper; toss and set aside.
In a medium-sized sauce pan, tumble in the chopped anchovies plus the olive oil they were packed in, the extra tablespoons of olive oil, garlic, capers, and Aleppo pepper. Turn on the flame and allow to simmer for a couple minutes. Take it off the heat and gently mix in the broccolini florets, tossing to coat. Then, add the spaghetti noodles and give it one final tumble before plating. Serve with plenty of extra Aleppo pepper flakes and Parmesan cheese.