Pasta with Garlic and Oil (Pasta aglio e olio)
1 lb. spaghetti
salt (sea salt or table salt)
6 T. olive oil
20 garlic loves from 1-2 heads, minced (4 T. total)
3/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
3 T. chopped fresh parsley
2 tsp. juice from 1 lemon
1 oz. grated Parmesan cheese (1/2 cup) (optional - but very good)
Bring 4 quarts of water to a boil in a large pot. Add pasta and 1 T. salt and cook, stirring often, until al dente (see package directions). Reserve 1/3 cup of the pasta cooking water; drain pasta and transfer it back to the pot.
Meanwhile, heat 3 T. oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-low heat until just shimmering. Add 3 T. garlic and 1/2 tsp. salt and reduce heat to low. Cook, stirring constantly, until the garlic foams and becomes sticky and straw-colored, 10-12 minutes (you may need to turn your heat up a bit depending on your stove). Off the heat, add remaining T. garlic, pepper flakes, parsley, lemon juice, and 2 T. pasta cooking water to the skillet and stir well to keep the garlic from clumping.
Transfer the drained pasta to a large serving bowl (or throw back in your pot if you'd like). Add remaining 3 T. olive oil and remaining pasta cooking water and toss to coat. Add the garlic mixture and 3/4 tsp. table salt (or 1 tsp. sea salt flakes) to the pasta. Toss well to combine. Serve immediately with optional Parmesan cheese, if desired.
Source: America's Test Kitchen