Killer spaghetti – spaghetti all’assassina recipe

Killer spaghetti, or Spaghetti all’assassina is a simple yet incredibly delicious recipe. Its creator was a man named Enzo Francavilla.

Many people will tell you that killer spaghetti are cooked like a risotto, by adding water a little at a time in a pan, but in reality it’s not.  This recipe was born when some customers arrived in Enzo’s restaurant and asked him something new. He only had garlic, spaghetti, some peeled canned tomatoes and chili pepper.

The real recipe calls for burnt garlic into an iron pan, hand-crushed tomatoes and some chili pepper.  Then you cook the pasta for just a couple of minutes and add it to the pan. Afterward you’ll cook  it with the water that comes out from the fresh tomatoes. The result should be a slightly crunchy pasta NOT BURNED. For some reasons many recipes on the web call this burnt spaghetti, many other say that the pasta should be almost black.

Crunchy killer spaghetti

I don’t even want to start on the downside of burning the tomatoes and the pasta. In fact, when you burn foods containing carbohydrates, the resulting compounds are very detrimental for our health. Actually, they also deteriorate the final taste of the pasta.

Killer spaghetti: Raw or cooked pasta?

As we already quickly touched, pasta has to be soft: not raw, neither cooked. You have to boil the pasta for three minutes, just enough to make it tender. Since the recipe calls for crushed peeled tomatoes, the sauce will be very watery in the beginning, and the spaghetti will absorb all this tasty water.

An important thing to know is that the end result should absolutely be slightly crunchy in some spots, not burnt. Killer spaghetti should be creamy and spicy,  with some additional crunch here and there. Actually the starch in the pasta, helps in getting a very creamy sauce that will cover the spaghetti.

Killer spaghetti how to cook

Are killer spaghetti healthy?

The short answer is yes. If prepared correctly, they are rich in lycopene, capsaicin, and also fibers from the tomatoes. If you use whole wheat pasta, you’ll add more fiber but the taste will change slightly. Cooking the tomatoes also increases the lycopene quantity and lycopene is a great ally for our health. Did you know that men can reduce by 30%  the risk of prostate cancer only by adding a tomato a day?

killer spaghetti recipe

Now let’s prepare the killer spaghetti!

Ingerdients for 4 servings

  • 400gr spaghettoni or vermicelli
  • 500gr of fresh tomatoes or pelati
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • chili pepper to taste
  • extra virgin olive oil a couple of tablespoon
  • salt to taste

How to prepare killer spaghetti (spaghetti all’assassina)

Step 1
Crush the peeled tomatoes with your hands (do not use a mixer). Bring a pot of salty water to a boil.

Step 2
Add the olive oil to the pan (you can actually use a non stick high quality pan  or a cast iron pan) and the garlic. Cook until the garlic is brown or almost burned, then remove it.
KEY STEP Add the crushed tomatoes and cover immediately with a lid. You need to be careful because it will spit and you could burn yourself. However the quicker you make it, the more smoked flavor you’ll retain in the pan. Keep the sauce cooking on low heat.

Step 3
Cook the pasta for two to three minutes, or until in becomes softer. Remove the lid from the pan and add the pasta.

Step 4
Cook the spaghetti in the sauce, mixing them frequently. If they become too dry, add some more tomatoes.

Step 5
When the pasta is cooked, keep cooking for another 5 minutes, or until you get some crunchy spots. Don’t burn it! make it slightly crunchy.
Serve immediately and enjoy!



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