This is what I cook for myself when I come downstairs for dinner and realise that dinner is, as usual, fucking chapattis. I’m thankful that I receive a hot cooked meal made for me every evening but I hate chapattis, and if I never saw one again it’d be too soon. Chapattis, to me, represent the drudgery of being an Indian woman having to retreat to the kitchen every evening to roll out the fuckers while the husband (ugh) and annoying kids (blech) watch TV. Screw you, chapattis. That shit is labour intensive and what do you get for it? The end product is a goddamn chapatti. (I know I’m being unfair to poor chapattis, but just laugh in the name of humour.)
When I’ve finished rolling my eyes (disgust, not disdain) and my eyeballs have resumed their original position, I grab what I need to make this because, as you’ll find, I already have everything I need in the kitchen.
There’s no photo because I ate it too quickly. It was bloody delicious.
Note: Cook the pasta and sauce at the same time, on adjacent hobs/stovetops.
Ingredients (Serves 1):
75-100 g dried spaghetti (I used wholewheat)
2 medium ripe tomatoes, chopped roughly
1/2 small onion, chopped roughly
3 fat cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 tsp hot red chili flakes
2-3 tbsp olive oil, plus more for dressing
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste
chopped fresh parsley (optional)
- Cook pasta as usual in boiling salted water. Salt generously, as we won’t be salting the sauce.
- While pasta is cooking, start cooking the garlic and onions in the olive oil in a small-medium saucepan.
- When sufficiently cooked (the garlic will go golden and the onions translucent), throw in the tomatoes.
- Add chili flakes and pepper and give it a stir.
- Pop on a lid and let cook on medium heat.
- After 5 minutes, the tomatoes should be softening nicely, and they should be letting out some liquid into the pan. If it looks dry, add water from the boiling pasta. Cover again and let cook.
- Keep adding pasta water to the sauce as it dries out, to thicken it and give moisture. This is vital to the sauce, so do retain all the pasta water. The sauce should be saucy, but not watery. If it’s too watery, simple let it cook down and reduce. If it’s too dry, add more of the starchy pasta water.
- After another 3-5 minutes, the pasta should be done. Drain the pasta and toss it into the sauce.
- Turn up the heat and toss quickly for a few seconds. The finished pasta will be perfectly al dente, coated lightly and elegantly in the spicy garlicky olive-oil-rich tomato sauce.
- Take off the heat and serve immediately. Drizzle with more olive oil, garnish with fresh parsley and more chili flakes.