A fabulous little thing I do when preparing pasta and my red sauce, is to include the richness of browned butter. This simple ingredient adds such flavor, wrapping itself around the pasta noodles like a coat of paint. I rather enjoy boiling lots of water and adding different shaped pastas, juggling the cook times so they are done simultaneously. Varieties, textures, shapes and flavors is a good change from the same sized noodles. More fun. Here you go!
Melt a 1/2 to 1 stick of unsalted butter and allow the water soluables to cook down. The bubbles will dissipate and then stir once. At this juncture the butter will brown rapidly. Remove from heat and stir in freshly crushed garlic (about three cloves) and let the ingredients mingle. Garlic powder can also work, just don’t let anything burn or you’ve missed the boat. Toss in salt and freshly ground pepper. Strain the cooked noodles, keeping about three soupspoons of pasta water. Put into a large bowl and pour the melted butter over the noodles. Using two utensils turn the food until evenly coated. Toss in a little more salt and plate up. Adorn with a scoop or two of red sauce and finally, add whichever cheese you like best on top. This pasta is fit for royalty. A lovely variation is to separately brown in butter, fresh slices of mushrooms and grilled onions. I add them to the sauce and some on the noodles, too.
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