Maurizio says this great Italian pasta recipe is simple enough to whip up at the end of a big night out. The secret to the best results is in emulsifying the sauce.






Skill level

Average: 3.2 (450 votes)


  • 400 g spaghetti
  • salt
  • 100 ml olive oil, plus extra for the sauce
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely sliced
  • 1 small red chilli, finely sliced
  • ½ cup roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • pepper
  • freshly grated parmesan, to serve (optional)

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Cook the spaghetti in a large saucepan of salted boiling water according to the packet instructions.

About 4 minutes before the pasta is ready, heat 100 ml of olive oil in a large frying pan and sauté the garlic and chilli. When the garlic turns nut-brown, add ½ cup of hot pasta water to stop the garlic cooking any further. Remove from the heat while you drain the pasta.

Return the pan to high heat and add the pasta, parsley and a little more olive oil. Keep tossing the pasta. The pasta water and oil will emulsify, thickening and coating the spaghetti. Season to taste with salt and pepper and sprinkle with parmesan, if you like.


Want more recipes like this? We recommend: 

• 110+ pastas: gnocchi, orecchiette, lasagne and more.
Another simple winner: creamy salmon pasta.
590+ Italian dishes including all your faves.
• Linguine, tagliatelle and more long pasta recipes.
Ready in a flash: 180+ quick meals like this one.