Sweet Onion Linguine with Anchovies, Arugula, and Walnuts
Inspired by seasonal freshness, this elegant yet simple pasta rivals anything you'll order in a good Italian restaurant. The secret is the anchovies, which don't overwhelm, but instead add flavor and depth. Great as a side, or top it with shrimp or scallops for a hearty main course.
RECIPE & PHOTO COURTESY OF:
- 1 lb. linguine
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 large onion, diced
- 3 anchovy fillets, finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons Calabrian chili paste (or any red chili paste that you can find)
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
- 2 - 3 cups fresh arugula
- 1 cup fresh basil, chopped
- Plenty of freshly grated/shaved parmesan cheese
- 1 cup walnuts, lightly toasted and chopped
- Lemon salt
Heat the olive oil and butter in a large pan over medium-high heat. Add the diced onion, anchovies and chili paste. Cook this mixture until the onions have caramelized and turned a golden amber color. Add the garlic and cook for one minute more. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed.
Cook the pasta according to package directions, but make sure to add a couple tablespoons of salt to the cooking water. This will add flavor to the pasta from the inside out, contributing to a more flavorful dish in the end. Reserve about 1 cup of the starchy cooking water. When it is al dente, toss the pasta with the onion and anchovy mixture in the pan. Add about 1/2 cup of the reserved cooking water to the pasta, helping to create a sauce and allow the onion mixture to adhere to the noodles. Add more if needed.
Add about a cup of grated parmesan to the pan, and toss to coat (this doesn’t have to be exact). Lastly, add the arugula and basil and lightly toss to mix.
Serve the pasta topped with some chopped toasted walnuts, extra parmesan, and a sprinkling of lemon salt if desired.