I’m not sure if any of you have seen the 2014 film, Chef, starring Jon Favreau, but it is one of my favorite feel-good movies to watch at home. Favreau had always wanted to make a film about food and chefs, and felt that he could make a smaller independent movie rather than a big-budget hit. He cited Jiro Dreams of Sushi, Eat Drink Man Woman and Big Night as inspirations for creating a food-centric film.
Favreau contacted Roy Choi, a restaurateur who created the Kogi Korean BBQ food truck in LA, to serve as a consultant on the film. While the film was in pre-production, Favreau actually shadowed Choi in his restaurants and worked as part of his kitchen crew after training at a culinary school. Choi oversaw all of the menus prepared for the film and created the famous Cubano sandwiches that form a central part of the storyline.
One of the best scenes in the movie is when Jon Favreau’s character makes a simple pasta dish for Scarlett Johansson’s character. Your mouth will fill will saliva just watching the meal being cooked! In June, Netflix released an 8-episode show, The Chef Show, where Jon and Roy get together and cook all of the food from the movie. After seeing how simple this recipe was, I knew I had to cook it myself – and it did not disappoint!
Pasta Aglio e Olio translates as spaghetti with garlic and oil. It’s traditional, simple, luxurious, and easy to make with ingredients you probably have on hand! Luckily for me, I live with a baker who was more than happy to make a sourdough loaf to go along with this dish. Recipe serves 4.
1 pound dried spaghetti
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
12 large garlic cloves, cut into thin slivers
1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
ground black pepper
1 cup fresh parsley, minced
1/2 cup parmesan cheese, freshly grated
-Bring a large pot of super-salted water to a boil and add the spaghetti, cooking until al dente, 8-10 minutes. Drain.
-Heat olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add garlic and stir often until the garlic is a gorgeous golden brown. Toss in your red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper.
-Add the drained spaghetti directly to the pan. Toss until the spaghetti is thoroughly coated with the garlic oil.
-Remove pan from heat, and add the parsley and parmesan cheese. Toss well. Check for flavor and adjust the salt if you need to.
-Squeeze the lemons on top to taste, and garnish with more parmesan. (You really can’t have too much cheese!)