Earlier this morning, I ran around town knocking out some errands. Nothing out of the usual….stopping by at the dry cleaners, making my bi-daily homage to Target and picking up some groceries.
I came a cross a beautiful bunch of organic Lacinato Kale for only a $1! Smoking Deal!
This particular variety originates from Italy–Tuscany to be specific. Since I couldn’t pass up the bargain, I grabbed a few bunches for the week.
As I was finishing my last errand, I had that moment. That brink when you know things may take a quick turn for the worst.
Yeah…I was about to get h’angry.
Hide yo’ kids! Hide yo’ wives!
It’s not a pretty picture ….and I needing something quick to make to save the world from the Namzilla.
As soon as I got into the kitchen, I quickly got a pot of water boiling and threw in some bucatini. At first glance, bucatini looks like a thick spaghetti noodle. But it actually is hollow inside and has a great texture and “toothiness” because of it.
While the noodles boiled, I minced up a pile of garlic and chopped up the kale into thin, long strips–a chiffonade. After quickly sauteing the garlic in olive oil, I added a generous amount of red pepper flakes and a huge dollop of anchovy paste.
Don’t freak out. The anchovy paste does not taste “fishy” at all but adds a rich, salty depth of flavor that you just can’t replicate. And if you don’t have anchovy paste, feel free to use 2-3 anchovy fillets.
Once the oil is infused with the garlic and anchovies, I added the kale and cooked them until they were tender but still had a bite to them.
Toss in the cooked bucatini, chopped tomatoes, parmesan–and that’s it!!! Super quick, super savory, and totally satisfying. The whole thing took about 15 minutes to whip up and is perfect for a fast weekday meal.
Bucatini with Anchovies and Kale
½ pound dried bucatini pasta (or other long strand pasta of your choice)
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 heaping tablespoon minced garlic
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes (more to finish)
1 heaping tablespoon anchovy paste or 2-3 anchovy fillets
½ bunch kale, chiffonade
1 cup diced tomatoes
¼ cup grated parmesan cheese (more to finish)
Boil the pasta for approximately 7-8 minutes in heavily salted water until al dente. Drain the pasta and reserve ¼ cup of the starchy water that the pasta was cooked in.
While the pasta cooks, heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large skillet. Add the garlic, red pepper flakes and cook for 1-2 minutes to infuse the oil. Add in the anchovies and stir until it melts into the oil. Toss in the kale and cook for 2 minutes until the leaves have wilted.
Toss in the cooked bucatini, tomatoes and cheese — coating the pasta well. If you want a looser based “sauce”, add a tablespoon at a time of the starchy pasta water until you reach your desired consistency. Season with additional kosher salt and black pepper as needed. Plate the pasta and cover each dish with additional parmesan and red pepper flakes.