1 pound spaghetti
Crusty bread, to pass at the table
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus some for drizzling
8 garlic cloves, chopped
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, or to your taste
8 to 10 flat anchovy fillets
1 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
4 vine-ripe tomatoes or 6 Roma tomatoes, cut lengthwise, lightly seeded, then sliced into thin half-moons
1 small white or yellow onion, quartered lengthwise, then thinly sliced
Coarse black pepper
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees F.
Heat a large pot of water to boil for the pasta. Salt the water and cook the pasta until al dente, 6 to 7 minutes or so.
Place the bread in a low oven to warm and crust it up.
While the pasta cooks, place a large, deep, nonstick heavy-bottomed skillet over medium-low heat. When the pan is warm add the 1/3 cup of EVOO, the garlic, red pepper flakes, and anchovies.
While the sauce and pasta work, chop a fistful of the parsley and combine it with the tomatoes and onions in a shallow bowl.
Dress the salad with a liberal drizzle of EVOO and season with salt and pepper. Finely chop the remaining parsley and set aside.
RR says: "This meal and the next have appeared in other books of mine. I did not invent the dishes - they are classics. My take on these classics are my two favorite meals, ever. I simply could not have you (or me) live through a whole year without having these dishes in there somewhere. Enjoy these oldies-but-oh-so-goodies!"
Her tidbit is this: "If you think you don't like anchovies, you're wrong. The anchovies will melt into the oil and break up completely. Help break them up with a wooden spoon as they cook. Once they melt into oil, the anchovies will no longer taste like fish but like salted, toasted nuts in garlic oil. [Then she takes God's name in vain, which means (when I recently explained it to my 4-year-old) to use the name of God without thinking or meaning what you say.]"
This was a good meal. It's by no means my favorite, but it's not bad. I reduced the amount of red pepper flakes so it wasn't spicy. That's necessary for my children. The salad was good, but next time I might cut the onions back to 1/2 or 1/4 onion. There were just too many onions.