Garlic and chilli pasta

Submitted - Ben
Views - 409
Serves - 4


1 onion, peeled
Extra-virgin olive oil
1 clove of garlic, peeled
1 small red chilli, halved and deseeded
1 small green chilli, halved and deseeded
2 fillets of salted anchovies, rinsed and roughly chopped
500g pasta
1 lemon
A generous bunch of parsley
A generous bunch of basil
Parmesan cheese, to serve


Finely chop the onion and fry in 1 tbsp of olive oil on a medium heat until the edges just start to catch. Mince the garlic and add to the onion. Reduce the heat and cook gently for 5 minutes to soften the onion. Finely chop the chillies and add to the pan with the anchovy fillets. Cook for a further 5 minutes on a low to medium heat. Set aside.

For the pasta, use the ratio of 1 litre of water to 100g of pasta and 10g of salt, and cook as per packet instructions.

Meanwhile, zest the lemon, chop the parsley and basil and grate the parmesan. Set aside.

Once the pasta is cooked, take 1 tbsp of the cooking water and add to the sauce. Drain the pasta and add to the sauce. Combine the two, add the lemon zest and chopped herbs, and grate over the parmesan to taste. Taste again and adjust the seasoning (with salt and freshly ground black pepper). Add a little olive oil and lemon juice if you think it requires more acidity.


The great thing about pasta is that you can always use it as the base for a quick meal. This recipe came about when I came home one day to find there was nothing in the fridge. With the help of a bit of garlic, chilli and handfuls of fresh herbs, you can turn a few store-cupboard staples into something quite delicious — and worth cooking even if the fridge is full.