Pantry Pasta


With winter coming to an end and spring approaching, it is the official season for spring cleaning or moving back home. I am sure you are all scrambling to clean out your kitchen cabinets — trying to figure out what to do with the miscellaneous condiments you never knew existed. But don’t worry because this recipe is here to help. Alison Roman’s pantry pasta is the perfect way to clean out your fridge, pantry, or that hidden cabinet consisting of all the condiments you bought once for that ‘one recipe,’ maybe even for one of mine.


A pan or skillet 

A pot

A mixing bowl



4-6 garlic cloves, finely chopped 

Half a lemon, seeds removed and finely chopped 

⅓ cup of olive oil

2 shallots, sliced or chopped 

1 tin of anchovies 

2 tbsps of capers, finely chopped

Red chili flakes 


Black pepper

1 handful of pasta (this should equate to about ½ cup)

You may use both herbs or one: parsley or chives, finely chopped

Optional: freshly grated parmesan 


In a mixing bowl, combine your lemon, half of your finely chopped garlic, salt, and black pepper and let the flavours fuse together. Meanwhile, heat your olive oil in a pan or skillet over medium heat. Combine your shallots, salt, black pepper, and the other half of your finely chopped garlic. Stir until caramelized or golden brown and softened, which should take about eight to 10 minutes over medium heat. 

While the mixture caramelizes, boil your water to cook the pasta. Once your shallots have caramelized, add your anchovies, capers, and red chilli flakes and stir until the anchovies have melted. By the end, you should get a thick concentrated paste — this should take about three to five minutes. 

In the pot of boiling water, give a generous pinch of salt and cook the pasta according to the instructions on the back of your pasta packaging. Cut down three to five minutes of the recommended cooking time or cook until the pasta is before al-dente. 

In the same pan or skillet, combine the pasta and paste together while occasionally adding a few tablespoons of pasta water and constantly stir it. Keep doing so until your pasta yields a sauce-like consistency. Finish the pasta with herbs and optional parmesan topping.