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Playing How to Make Crispy Spaghetti Nests with Arrabbiata by Rachael

Cooked spaghetti gets fried up into a crisp and crunchy nest then sauced with a bold, spicy Arrabbiata sauce.

Rach says, “For Sunday brunches, add a fried egg, up or over.”


For the Arrabbiata Sauce
  • 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced or chopped
  • Salt
  • 1 teaspoon marjoram or oregano, lightly crushed
  • 1 scant tablespoon Calabrian chili paste or chili flakes
  • ¼ cup sundried tomato paste or tomato paste
  • ¾ cup red wine
  • 1 teaspoon superfine sugar
  • 1 jar passata or 2 cups tomato puree or sauce
  • 1 can or ½ box diced tomatoes, 1 ½-2 cups
  • A handful of basil leaves, torn, plus small leaves for garnish
For the Crispy Pasta Nests
  • 1 pound spaghetti
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 4 cloves garlic, sliced or grated
  • Salt
  • 1-1 ½ cups freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • 1 large egg
For serving
  • Fried or over-easy eggs, optional


Serves: 4


Heat a large pot of water to boil for spaghetti.

For the Arrabbiata sauce, heat a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat with EVOO, 4 turns of the pan, add onion, garlic, salt, marjoram or oregano, chili paste or chili flakes, and tomato paste, and cook to soften 7-8 minutes. Add wine and cook down 2 minutes, then add sugar, sauce, tomatoes and basil, and simmer 20-30 minutes.

For pasta, in a small pot, heat EVOO, about 3 tablespoons, over medium heat, then add butter and when it foams add garlic and swirl a minute or 2.  

Season pasta water liberally with salt, about 2 tablespoons, and cook pasta about 7 minutes. Reserve ¾ cup water and drain pasta, then return to hot pot. Add EVOO and garlic butter, reserved water, Parmigiano-Reggiano, and egg, and toss 2 minutes.

Heat two small 8- to 10-inch nonstick skillets over medium-high heat. Using a fork, twist a large nest, about ¼ of the pasta, and transfer to the nonstick skillet. Cover pan and cook pasta to crisp on bottom and sides but still tender on top. Transfer to warm oven, and repeat. If you’d like the nests crispy on both sides, flip nest over and cook until brown. Place nests in shallow bowl or rimmed dinner plates and top with even layer of sauce and basil. Add fried or over-easy egg, optional.