Since we’re on the topic of Italian dishes (see last post, lemon olive oil cake), lets talk about one of my all time favorite Italian dishes. Before I get into it, I want to say that when I first learned this recipe it did not involve half of the ingredients you’ll see below. Over the years I added and tweaked this recipe to make it what it is today. So the story is, I grew up in an amazing neighborhood. In my book, the food capital of the world is the 200 block of 7th St. in Winona, MN. My family represented Sudan and the Middle East (Side note, I predict Middle Eastern food being one of the next big trends), my next door neighbors represented Whales. After that an Irish family. Across the street was a French family, next to them an Italian family and just down a couple blocks another Italian family. As you can imagine, every Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve (celebrated with fondue and wine), dinner party, etc. was basically a 5 star meal.
This specific recipe came from the Italian family down the block. Their oldest boy, Giovanni, was, still is, best friends with my older brother. One day, maybe 7 years ago, in the middle of summer we were sitting in the kitchen, Gio, my brother, my dad and I. We were hungry and not sure what to make and Gio decided to show us a classic Italian lunch, garlic, noodles and olive oil. Really, that was the whole recipe. Boil the noodles, mince some garlic, sauté it in some olive oil and add the noodles. It was amazing. I can still taste it today. It was so simple and so satisfying. I kept that recipe with me all through high school and when I moved out it was one of my go-to’s. As the years went on, I added to the recipe with whatever I had around the house to make it into what it is today.
Duck fat is not necessarily easy to find, if you live near an Eataly or other Italian food market you might be able to find it there. If you cook with duck at all, save the fat, just like if it were bacon fat. I’ve also seen it on Amazon.
- Spaghetti noodles
- 2-3 TBSP Duck Fat
- 1 TBSP E.V.O.O.
- Prosciutto, cut into small pieces
- Button mushrooms, sliced very thin
- 2-3 Large cloves of garlic, minced
- Pinch of Sea Salt
- Boil pasta in salt water.
- In a medium sauté pan, heat duck fat and olive oil.
- Add mushrooms and prosciutto and cook until they start to get crispy.
- Add garlic and sauté until mushrooms and prosciutto are crispy and garlic is soft and aromatic.
- Once the pasta is cooked, add it directly to the sauté pan and cook for about two more minutes until everything is incorporated.
- Top with sea salt and enjoy