Pasta with Garlic, Oil and Anchovy Sauce

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“I hate anchovies.”

That is the universal reaction I get when I even whisper the word. Everybody thinks they hate anchovies but they don’t.

You mean you hate that Caesar salad you just had three helpings of?

Anchovies make it good.

Coming back for seconds on the pasta with marinara sauce?

Yes, anchovies make it good.

I can’t quite get to an anchovy pizza. That’s too much even for me. But anchovies add a back note to so many recipes. That somethin’ somethin’ you can’t quite identify. Anchovy filets quite literally melt into whatever you’re making. If you want to dip a toe into the pool, try anchovy paste first. I have, like, 12 tubes of it in my pantry right now.

This is a great 15-minute pasta sauce from Epicurious. Read the recipe here or just jump to this link.

Next, we will be taking up MSG as a flavor enhancer. I can’t wait for that one.

Pasta with Garlic, Oil and Anchovy Sauce

1 pound spaghettini or spaghetti

Kosher salt

4 oil-packed flat anchovy fillets

6 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced

1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

1 cup plus 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided

1/2 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

1 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs) or coarse fresh breadcrumbs

Freshly ground black pepper

Freshly grated Parmesan (for serving)

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