Monday, September 23, 2013

Angel Hair Pasta with Friday Sauce #CuisineNicoise

I've heard tomato sauce referred to as Sunday Sauce by my Italian friends - and in cookbooks. But until I got the cookbook Cuisine Nicoise by Hillary Davis, I'd never heard of Friday Sauce.

So of course I was curious.

I like pasta - all kinds of pasta - but I usually don't associate it with French cooking. But why not? Pasta is used all over the world. Of course it must be used in France.

This is another recipe that's very simple to prepare, and the ingredients aren't too exotic. Maybe not everyone keeps anchovies in the pantry, but they're not hard to find. If you like this recipe you might start stocking them for quick pasta meals. And olives? Well, those are one thing I almost always have.

The sauce cooks in about the same time the pasta cooks, or close enough. The recipe suggested cooking the pasta and keeping it warm with a drizzle of oil on it, but I had the water heating while I gathered and prepped my other ingredients and it all worked out well.

I thought a little extra squeeze of lemon at the table was a nice idea, but then again I'm a lemon fiend.

I wasn't sure how big a can of anchovies was intended, and I'm not sure if there's a standard-sized can, but I just went with the jar I had - 3.7 ounces.

Angel Hair Pasta with Friday Sauce
Adapted from Cuisine Nicoise by Hillary Davis

1 pound dry angel hair pasta (I used a whole wheat angel hair pasta)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 can anchovies in olive oil
6 garlic cloves, pressed
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons pitted black olives or oil-cured olives, minced
Pinch of cayenne pepper
1 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese

Cook the pasta in generously salted water. If it's done cooking before the sauce is done, drain it, drizzle with a little olive oil, and keep warm.

In a large skillet, heat the olive oil, anchovies with their oil, garlic, and lemon juice. Cook over low heat until the anchovies and garlic softens to the point where you can mash it with a fork. Whisk to blend. (Mine didn't blend at this point, but it did combine when the pasta was added - I think it needed a little water to make it combine.) Add the olives and cayenne and stir.

Add the pasta, toss to coat it with the anchovy sauce, and cook for another minute. (I added a bit of pasta cooking water.)

Serve with the parmesan cheese on top, or pass at the table.