Weekend cooking – Spaghetti Aglio e Olio Recipe (pasta with oil and garlic – video)

This is hands down, my favorite way to quickly prepare pasta at home. In the winter when I have a cold, I always go for this because it’s a massive injection of healthy garlic. The crushed red pepper is also helpful if you have a stuffy nose, though the cheese, less so.

Even last night, Jojo was working on the final graphics of her upcoming book release so I took advantage of the moment (she’s wheat free because of allergies) and made a bowl of this. Over the years I’ve always made it using my ceramic garlic grater (not unlike the Japanese ginger graters, but different) but I did try it last night the way he does in the video. I liked his version as well though it did take a few minutes more to get the garlic properly cooked.

As he says in the video, when you cook the garlic it’s fairly mild so don’t be too worried about the volume. I used three pretty large cloves of garlic last night and it was fine. While I did notice a distinct lack of vampires in the area last night, I must say, I haven’t seen them around before either.

It’s as easy it gets plus it’s downright delicious.


An American in Paris, France. BA in History & Political Science from Ohio State. Provided consulting services to US software startups, launching new business overseas that have both IPO’d and sold to well-known global software companies. Currently launching a new cloud-based startup. Full bio here.

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  • Ms716

    I added broccoli to the olive oil and garlic and browned some ground Italian sausage to add to the pasta

  • http://www.rebeccamorn.com/mind BeccaM

    BTW, we’re going to try this dish this week. I’ll let y’all know how it goes in some future food post.

  • Number Six

    When I first saw this headline, I read it as “Cooking…Spaghetti…O” — I have GOT to stop speed reading articles!

  • http://www.rebeccamorn.com/mind BeccaM

    What I’m liking is how most of his recipes, although interesting and sometimes unusual, are almost all pretty simple and don’t take that much time.

  • Freday63

    I have used many of his recipes and they always turn out very well. My latest one was the “Sweet Hot Mustard Chicken Thighs.” It was awesome!

  • http://www.rebeccamorn.com/mind BeccaM

    We have one. It’s almost never used. I’ve found the palm-rolling method is faster.

  • Robb Silverberg
  • http://www.rebeccamorn.com/mind BeccaM

    Yeah, I’m not crazy about the peeling part either, but I’ve developed a system. I cut off the tips at either end, then roll the clove between my palms. The outer skin usually pops right off.

    If not, I’ll score the skin with the paring knife, then roll it again.

    However, you’re right, it can get tedious when doing lots of cloves.

  • Monoceros Forth

    I used to get the minced stuff in jars for simple ease of use but the flavor is inferior and the price is much higher by weight, especially since I can get three bulbs of garlic for a dollar. The only thing I don’t like is having to peel the cloves first.

  • http://AMERICAblog.com/ John Aravosis

    I find smashing works wonders.

  • http://adgitadiaries.com/ karmanot

    Simple, perfect, absolutely delicious

  • http://www.rebeccamorn.com/mind BeccaM

    Mixing the pasta with the sauce in the pan sounds like a terrific idea — and yeah, the amount of oil he used did seem somewhat excessive. I was already planning to cut it in half.

  • http://www.rebeccamorn.com/mind BeccaM

    I just slice, chop, and dice until I achieve the desired level of thinness on the garlic.

  • Monoceros Forth

    I disagree with Alton Brown on many points but I agree with him generally that a kitchen does not need single-use tools. (He has himself violated this principle however.) A special grater for garlic–distinct from a grater used only for ginger? I don’t see the point.

    To deal with garlic usually I just smash a clove, or half a clove if the whole clove is big, with a sharp blow of the hand against the broad side of a chef’s knife. If necessary I’ll cut up the resulting pieces a bit more with the knife. I once tried the GoodFellas method, slicing the clove very thinly with a razor blade, but had bad luck with it.

  • Hue-Man

    Three modifications. First, I don’t use nearly that much oil for two servings. Second, I often use ravioli (I like them but haven’t found a better sauce than oil&garlic). Third, I put the pasta into the frying pan to keep the pasta hot and absorb the sauce. Obviously not practical if you’re cooking for 10. Good for summer with short cooking time on the stove-top. For that matter, good anytime. One downside – you’ll be “fragrant” for several days!

  • Sugapea

    Great Recipe! Thank You!
    Garlic is very inexpensive and extremely good for you.
    In fact, it’s said that 1 milligram of Garlic (allicin) has a potency of 15 standard units of penicillin.
    http://www.disabled-world.com/artman/publish/garlic-benefit.shtml

  • http://www.rebeccamorn.com/mind BeccaM

    That looks really tasty — and we love garlic here, so I’m gonna have to give it a try.

    I also noticed that ‘Chef John’s’ Food Wishes website is simply loaded with all kinds of interesting looking recipes. Bookmarked for sure.

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