When I was a college student living on my own years ago, one of my go-to quick dishes was spaghetti noodles stirred in with a little olive oil, Parmesan cheese, and rosemary. It’s still a favorite comforting side dish, though I’ve fancied it up a notch with the use of angel hair pasta (so quick!), more herbs than just rosemary, sliced garlic, some red pepper flakes, and lots of freshly ground black pepper. In this recipe we are using rosemary, oregano, and thyme, sturdy herbs that grow year round outside my kitchen window. You could easily use other herbs. If you use more delicate herbs like tarragon or basil, I would recommend not heating them in the oil, but tossing them in at the end with the Parmesan cheese.
This recipe can easily be doubled. If you use delicate herbs such as basil or tarragon, toss them in at the end with the Parmesan.
- 8 ounces angel hair pasta
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 Tbsp finely chopped fresh herbs such as rosemary, thyme, oregano
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 3 cloves of garlic, sliced
- 1/8 teaspoon chili pepper flakes (or more to taste)
- 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper (to taste)
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. (1 Tbsp salt for every 2 quarts of water).
2 While the water is heating in step 1, heat the olive oil in a small saucepan on medium heat. Add the sliced garlic, chili pepper flakes, finely chopped herbs, and chopped parsley to the oil. Cook for one minute or until the parsley has wilted and the garlic is emitting a strong fragrance. Remove from heat.
3 The angel hair past will cook in about 2 minutes once it starts, so get everything ready. Once the water is at a rolling boil, add the pasta. Cook at a rolling boil until al dente. Drain the pasta and rinse briefly with cold water, just enough to stop the cooking, but not so much as to make the pasta cold. The pasta should still be quite warm.
4 Place pasta in a large bowl. Pour herbed garlic sauce over the pasta and gently toss to combine. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese and freshly ground black pepper over the pasta and gently toss to combine.
Serve immediately as a side dish. Reheats well if you make ahead.