The first recipe in The Globetrotter Cookbook is a simple spaghetti dish that is light, yet satisfying. When traveling, pasta is often the easiest thing to make, but it doesn’t have to be boring! It’s become my go-to dish when I couchsurf because it’s quick to make, and only requires a few ingredients, most of which you probably already have in your kitchen!
Serves 2 people.
- 150 g spaghetti
- 1 clove of garlic, chopped or minced
- 1-2 dried chilies (optional)
- 2 tsp thyme (or other dried italian herb)
- 10 cherry tomatoes, halved
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1-1.5 tbsp capers
- 10 kalamata olives (optional)
- Juice of half a lemon
- a handful of fresh parsley, roughly chopped
- salt and pepper (to taste)
- 1/4 cup reserved pasta water
Prepare the spaghetti according to package instructions. Don’t forget to reserve about 1/4 cup of pasta water. While pasta is cooking, heat olive oil in a pan on medium-low heat, and add garlic, chilies and thyme. Sautée until fragrant.
Raise the heat to medium and throw in the cherry tomatoes, seasoning with a pinch of salt and pepper. Cook for about 5 minutes, then add drained pasta, olives and capers and mix together on medium-low heat for about 2 minutes, pouring in reserved pasta water a little at a time. You want it to look creamy, not watery.
Squeeze lemon juice and sprinkle freshly chopped parsley over the pasta. Add more salt and pepper to taste, or sprinkle with vegan parmesan if desired.
Since Thanksgiving (in Canada) is coming up next Monday, I thought I would also show you a more festive option, inspired by my friend Kaila who came over for dinner. Here I’ve substituted the pasta for seasonal spaghetti squash. Served with garlic bread, it acts as a main course on its own, but it would also provide an excellent side dish. I also added spinach this time, because there clearly wasn’t enough veg in there!
For this version of the recipe, cut the spaghetti squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Spread about 1 tsp of olive oil on each side along with salt and pepper with your hands. Place upside down in a wide baking dish and put in the oven preheated to 200 C for about 35-45 minutes. When it’s ready, you should be able to scrape it out with a fork to make spaghetti-like strands. It’s super cute when served in the shell as above, or you can serve it like real spaghetti in a bowl as below.
WARNING: Do not put the squash in whole as I did…my friends and I were chatting away when we heard a very loud bang. The squash will explode. Not fun times, as you can see.
What has been your biggest mistake in the kitchen? What are your no-fail simple recipes? Let me know!