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Mario Batali’s Tomato & Chorizo Spaghetti Is a Weeknight Dinner Dream

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IAIN BAGWELL

Mario Batali is turning the entire culinary world red for a good cause—starting with this pasta dish.

During the month of June, the global chef ambassador for the EAT (RED) SAVE LIVES campaign is teaming up with other celebrity chefs like Anthony Bourdain and Nancy Silverton to raise money for the Global Fund to fight AIDS. The stars will be hosting dinners and events around the country with up to 50 percent of proceeds benefitting the fund. The (RED) Supper on June 2 in New York City kicks off the third annual campaign.

RELATED: Mario Batali and Anthony Bourdain Play an Epic Round of ‘Would You Rather’

Also, throughout the month, 19 of Batali’s restaurants will be holding fundraising dinners—but just in case you can’t make it to one of his eateries, he’s sharing this hearty dish exclusively in this week’s issue of PEOPLE. Batali has even recently whipped up the satisfying spaghetti for (RED)’s cofounder Bono—so you know it’s good.

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The entrée can be prepared in just 30 minutes and, best of all, it’s easily customizable to match your taste buds. Use a hotter or more mild pepper depending on your desired level of heat; use whole wheat spaghetti for a healthy twist or swap in any fresh sausage in place of the chorizo.

RELATED: Watching Mario Batali and Aziz Ansari in the Kitchen Will Cause Hunger Pangs—and Spontaneous Fits of Laughter

Mario Batali’s Tomato & Chorizo Spaghetti
Serves: 4

1 lb. spaghetti
1 bunch fresh basil
¼ cup plus 2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
5 oz. fresh chorizo, casings removed
1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
1½ tbsp. thinly sliced green chiles or jalapeños
1 pt. cherry tomatoes, quartered
1½ tsp. kosher salt
¼ tsp. black pepper
4 oz. Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated and divided

1. Cook spaghetti according to package directions. Drain, reserving ¾ cup cooking water.

2. Separate basil leaves and stems; finely chop stems. Set aside leaves. Heat ¼ cup olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add chorizo, garlic and basil stems; cook, stirring occasionally, until chorizo is browned, about 3 minutes. Add chiles, and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add tomatoes, and cook, stirring occasionally, until tomatoes begin to break down, about 3 minutes. Stir in salt and pepper.

3. Add cooked spaghetti and reserved cooking water to skillet, and cook 1 minute, tossing to coat pasta. Remove from heat. Roughly chop basil leaves. Add basil leaves and ½ cup grated cheese to spaghetti mixture. Toss to combine.

4. Drizzle with remaining olive oil, and sprinkle with remaining cheese.
Active time: 20 minutes
Total time: 30 minutes