Salt, for cooking the pasta and for seasoning
1 pound vermicelli (or spaghetti, linguine, fettucine, etc)
1/2 cup quality extra virgin olive oil
4–6 cloves of garlic, chopped
Optional (we used all of these in our recipe):
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, crushed
Parmesan cheese, grated
Italian flat leaf parsley, chopped
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add a large pinch of salt to the water, then add vermicelli to the boiling water. Cook until al dente. Reserve 1 cup of the cooking water, then drain the pasta.
While the pasta cooks, add olive oil, chopped garlic, and red pepper flakes (if desired) to a large sauté pan that is large enough to hold all of the cooked pasta once it is added.
Cook the garlic and oil mixture over medium heat until the garlic starts to turn golden – being careful not to let it burn. Transfer drained pasta to the sauté pan and toss to coat. Taste and add more salt if needed. If the past seems dry, add some of the reserved pasta cooking water.
Sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese and chopped parsley on top, then serve immediately.
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