One of the things that I regularly keep in my kitchen is a tin of anchovies, most of the time bought at Trader Joe’s. I thought it has been toooo tooooooo long since last I made anything from a Jamie Oliver cookbook and it was time. Also few months ago my friends S & S finally gave me my Xmas present and HELLO it was the Jamie’s Food Revolution cookbook. This cookbook is geared towards people that can’t really cook so to me means simple recipes! I was flipping through the book and came upon this recipe for Pasta Al Pangrattato. All you need are bread crumbs, anchovies, thyme, dried chili and pasta. Luckily I had everything except thyme. Once I got the thyme I prepped everything and made the dish. FYI, the anchovies that Trader Joe sells do not melt in the pan. I have tried it many times and every time they don’t melt like they should. I have bought anchovies from higher end grocery stores and they do melt.
I wasn’t a big fan of this dish because it was too dry. I like my pasta with a bit of sauce but this was hella easy to make and good way to use up old bread.
2 cloves of garlic
1-2 dried chiles, to your taste
4 sprigs of fresh thyme
4 slices of stale bread
1 pound dried fusilli
8 anchovies in oil
To prepare you pasta
Peel and finely slice the garlic. Finely chop your chiles. Pick the thyme leaves off the stalks. Slice the crusts off the bread and discard. If they’re dry enough, finely grate your slices of bread if not, break them up into small breadcrumbs with your fingers or give them a quick whiz in a food processor.
To cook your pasta
Bring a large pan of salted water to a boil. Add the fusilli and cook according to the package instructions. Halfway through the cooking time, put a large frying pan on medium heat and let it get hot. Pour about 2 tablespoons of the oil from the tin of anchovies into the pan, let it get hot, then stir in your breadcrumbs. Add the garlic, chile, thyme leaves and anchovies (but not the remaining oil in the tin) and cook for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring every so often, until the breadcrumbs are golden brown. Drain the fusilli in a colander over a bowl, reserving some of the cooking water in case you want to add a splash to loosen up the pasta. Add to the frying pan and stir well. Squeeze the juice of half the lemon over the pasta. Give the pan a shake. Have a taste, and if you think it needs a little more lemon, squeeze the other half over too.