I'm doing some kitchen witchery of my own right now - I'm redesigning our kitchen - which will then serve as mission control for creation of my famous aglio-olio spaghetti
Which, if you 're interested, is really easy.
A big handful of peeled garlic cloves. Three or four different chillies. I use whole dried Italian hot peppers, anchos, Guajillo, and California, either crushed in hand, or chiffonade depending on mood. Olive oil into 12" sautee pan until bases is covered. Low heat. Add garlic cloves and peppers. Find a good quality anchovy, either a in small tin or jar of oil packed fillets, add 6-10 fillets. Cook together on lowest heat available until garlic turns soft and slightly golden and anchovies break down. Shut off heat, leave on burner (electric) and cover top to retain heat. If You;re using something with fancier temp regulation, like a high end gas or induction, adjust accordingly. Just let the whole thing poach together for about hour.
Boil your water, add a giant fist full of salt to the pasta water. Use dried, square spaghetti, trust me, but if you can't find square, use whatever you got, not too thin. No fresh pasta, this is a recipe for pasta asciutta
. Cook al-dente
. As your pasta is boiling, take the lid/cover off your sautee pan - I just use an oversize lid from a deep pot, since many sautees don't actually come with a lid. turn it back to low heat and raise temp just enough to make sure the garlic gets really soft, not enough to burn it, a little browning is OK. Most of your chillis will have turned to oil red by now, and the anchovies will have completely disintegrated - if you used good quality fillets. If you only had cheaper fillets, just agitate them a bit and stir them around and they will break apart too. With about 1 minute left on your pasta boil, scoop out an espresso cup worth of boiling water and add it to your oil/anchovy/chilli sauce - which is really more of a condiment. Stir.
Drain your pasta (you should make 450g) and add it back to the sautee to mix it back together. DON'T put it back in the pot and try to pour the oil into the pot. Toss the spaghetti until everything is coated and plate. Cover with parmigianno, or romano, or a blend of the two. If I have a fresh fresno chilli, at this point I chiffonade it, and sprinkle over top. A little black pepper to taste. Now, you you really want a treat, you can also toast some bread crumbs in a separate dry pan while your water is boiling. Use plain dry crumbs, and toast them dark brown. Sprinkle them on with the cheese - they will add a nutty layer and texture.
That's it. Then go get fat. It's a ridiculously edible plate, it goes down like potato chips, you can't stop eating it. I'll eat a half pound by myself and still feel hungry. Cheap to make too.
PS. Damn, kitchen's have become frightfully expensive. Does anyone know where to get a good kitchen in the Toronto area, without having to sell a kidney?