Some days I feel torn between wanting to cook something nice and not having the mental energy to do it. So I re-invented a classic: Spaghetti aglio, olio e peperoncino (garlic, oil and chili pepper spaghetti).
This dish is a classic for a reason, it's amazingly easy and stunningly delicious. Every time it blows my mind how can 3 simple basic ingredients when mixed and cooked together create such a deep and intense flavor.
The oil is slowly infused with the garlic flavor and the chili spiciness, making it a perfect condiment for any type of pasta shape! Although my favorite pairing for the garlic chili oil is always with Spaghetti. The roasted cherry tomatoes will add some sweetness and acidity which makes each bite explode with flavor!
If you don't want to add the tomatoes, you can omit those steps and make the classic "Aglio, olio e peperoncino", this way you'll have a meal on the table in less than 15 minutes!
How to make roasted cherry tomatoes
I always seen cooks on tv doing confit tomatoes but I never did it before, so I wanted to give it a try. But long recipes that takes hours usually are not my biggest strenght. Simply because I forget to start the cooking on time (the only exception is my Tuscan Ragù because I mentally prepare days in advance). Instead, I quickly oven roasted the tomatoes and the result blew my mind!
Cherry tomatoes are particularly indicated for this because of their intense flavor and sweetness. They pair so perfectly with this pasta aglio, olio and peperoncino. I tried it with many tomato varieties and it's always a nice result. You can either roast them at high temperature for 10-15 minutes or if you're in a hurry put them under the broiler. They will caramelize nicely in as quickly as 5 minutes.
Roasting in the oven makes the cherry tomatoes soft and incredibly flavorful. In each bite you can taste sweet, acid, salty and bitter from the caramelization. It's a multisensorial experience. Okay, maybe I'm selling it too much, but you absolutely need to try this. Soon, you'll be adding roasted cherry tomatoes to every dish!
If you like this recipe, try also these other Spaghetti recipes:
Spaghetti with Aglio, Olio, Peperoncino and Roasted Cherry Tomatoes
- 6 oz Spaghetti
- 5-6 Garlic cloves, halved
- ⅓ cup Olive Oil, extra virgin
- ½ tablespoon Chilli Pepper flakes
- 10 Cherry tomatoes, quartered or halved
- fresh Basil leaves
- Pecorino cheese, optional
- Bring to boil a large pot of salted water.
- Spread the halved or quartered cherry tomatoes on a sheet pan over parchment paper or aluminum foil, then drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle a little bit of sugar, then add the salt and some chilli pepper flakes.
- Toss with your hands to coat them well, then spread them again and put in a preheated oven at 220°C (430°F) on the top rack for about 10-15 minutes or under the broiler for about 5 minutes or until they start to caramelize.
- Add the spaghetti to the boiling water and after a few seconds mix with a fork or tongs so they don't stick together.
- Add the olive oil in a large pan with the garlic and cook at low heat so the garlic will confit and will not burn. If it browns too quickly, remove the pan from the heat for a little bit so the oil will cool down.
- When the tomatoes are caramelized, take them out of the oven.
- Remove the pan with oil from the heat, drain the pasta and add it to the pan (be careful, if the oil is too hot the water drops will "explode" at contact and will splatter all over).
- Add the chilli pepper flakes and toss the pasta well so it gets nice and oily. Serve with the roasted tomatoes on top, some shredded basil and grated Pecorino cheese.
Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.