By: Michele Wolfson
You’re planning to dine in on Valentine’s Day, so you’ve probably got in mind a little soft music, candlelight, and wine, pairing perfectly with an Italian entree. Let me paint you a picture: One plate of spaghetti leading to one spaghetti strand. A kiss. So goes the iconic scene of two hounds from opposite sides of the tracks in the Disney classic “Lady and the Tramp.”
Recreate this scene so you have your pasta and enjoy it, too. You and your loved one will devour this dish with joyous abandon. It’s impossible not to relish in the pleasure of a bowl of pasta where even a little bit of moaning occurs. Who knew pasta could be so provocative?
This dish is named for the town of Amatrice, about an hour east of Rome, considered by many Italians to be the birthplace of the best cooks on the peninsula. Many dishes at the heart of Roman cooking may indeed have actually started in the region to the east of Lazio, Abruzzo.
Bucatini all’Amatriciana Vegetariana Recipe
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 medium red onion, sliced thin
3 cloves garlic, sliced
3 cups canned San Marzano tomatoes (about a 28-ounce can)
1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes, or to taste
Salt to taste
1/4 cup grated aged pecorino cheese, more for serving
1 pound bucatini
- Heat oil in a 12-inch skillet. Add onion and garlic, and saute over medium heat until transparent.
- Break up tomatoes and add. Cook about 15 minutes, crushing tomatoes with a spoon, until sauce has become somewhat concentrated and homogenized. Season with chili and salt and stir in 1 tablespoon cheese. Remove from heat.
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, add bucatini and cook until al dente, about 9 minutes. Drain and transfer to skillet. Gently reheat contents of skillet, folding pasta and tomato sauce together until they are heated through and pasta is well-coated, about 5 minutes. Fold in remaining cheese. Check seasoning and serve with more cheese on the side.
Michele Wolfson is a graduate of The Natural Gourmet Institute and is passionate about all areas of food, from writing about it, to photographing, growing, cooking, and consuming it. A vegetarian since she was seven years old, Michele knows the ins and outs of enjoying a healthy vegetarian lifestyle in Manhattan, which she writes about for Examiner.com as its Manhattan Vegetarian Examiner.
For more on Valentine’s Day, follow me on Twitter (@MarcusCooks)