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New Year's Eve Memory: Pasta with Garlic & (gasp!) Anchovies

By December 28, 2011

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Growing up in an Italian household, holidays were connected with very specific foods -- and a holiday without them was unthinkable. A Christmas without lasagna, for example, would have been the gustatory equivalent of The Year Without a Santa Claus. No Easter Pie on Easter? Someone check the calendar; Easter must be next week!

On New Year's Eve in our house, the traditional 'good luck' dish for the new year was thin spaghetti dressed simply with olive oil, sauteed garlic and... yes, the fearsome, dreaded tinned anchovies. It certainly was a 'good luck' dish -- as in good luck getting us kids to eat it.

Older and wiser now, I've come to appreciate anchovies for their salty, briny intensity of flavor. I even throw together that New Year's Eve 'good luck' dish at other times of the year because it's so easy and so good. Just saute some finely chopped garlic in good olive oil, toss in some cooked angel hair or thin spaghetti, add a few tinned anchovy fillets and toss again. That's all there is to it.

Give it a try this year and it may become a New Year's Eve tradition in your house, too.


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