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DELFINA’S SPAGHETTI WITH PLUM TOMATOES, GARLIC, CHILI FLAKES AND EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL

Cuisine:
  • Serves 4
  • Medium

Ingredients

Directions

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  1. Break open each tomato and remove the seeds. Drop the tomatoes into a bowl. 
When all the tomatoes are seeded, break them up with your hands and strain the juice back over them.
  2. Smash the garlic with the side of a chef’s knife and smear it slightly with a 
sprinkling of kosher salt. Combine the garlic with the oil and heat in a large 
heavy-bottomed saucepot over medium-low heat. Cover and stew slowly until 
soft and melted in texture but not browned. About 10 minutes.
  3. Add the tomatoes, their juice and the water. Season with some salt, pepper and 
a touch of chili flake. Bring to a boil and skim the foam but not the oil. Reduce 
the heat to medium and cook uncovered until the oil has emulsified with the rest 
of the sauce and reduced by approximately two thirds, about forty –five 
minutes. Remove from heat and stir-in the basil leaves.
  4. Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling lightly salted water for six minutes (pasta 
won’t be completely cooked). Drain and save 10-12 oz of the cooking water.
  5. Ladle desired quantity of sauce into a saute pan. Add a pinch of chili flake and 
then the partially cooked pasta to the sauce along with a few ounces of pasta cooking water and bring to a boil. Continue to cook rapidly for approximately 
 five more minutes. Add more pasta water during this time if necessary. Adjust the seasoning with salt, pepper and chili flake to taste. Just before plating add a drizzle of finishing oil and a couple of torn basil leaves.

Notes:

  1. This process allows the pasta to actually absorb some of the sauce. Additionally, 
 the pasta releases starch which thickens the sauce and helps it cling to the pasta. 
This way it doesn’t run off of the spaghetti and sit on the bottom of the bowl.
  2. The result should be juicy and shiny and full of flavor, but with no residual sauce. All of the sauce should be contained within the body of the spaghetti. The last 
bite of pasta should bring the last bit of sauce with it.

Craig Stoll

James Beard Award Winner and critically acclaimed chef, Craig Stoll, might be a New York native and a San Franciscan at heart, but it’s his love and respect for soulful Italian cooking that have come to define him. After graduating from the Culinary Institute of America and working through some of San Francisco’s finest restaurants, Craig was awarded a scholarship to attend the ICIF cooking school in Torino, Italy. There it was an externship at Tuscany’s one-Michelin-star restaurant Da Delfina that paved his vision. He returned to San Francisco and in 1998, along with his wife Annie Stoll, opened Delfina, a relatively casual 50-seat restaurant located in the still up-and-coming Mission District, serving rustic Italian food infused with San Francisco’s local and sustainable values.

Delfina quickly became a major dining destination, bringing people from all over to try Craig’s cooking including signature dishes like the Fresh Grilled Calamari, Insalata di Campo and Spaghetti and demanding the restaurant’s expansion to 85-seats. This ultimately garnered him a place as one of Food & Wine’s “Best New Chefs” in 2001 and Best Chef: Pacific from the James Beard Foundation in 2010. In 2005, the Stoll’s opened their first Pizzeria Delfina next door, following up with a second location in Pacific Heights in 2009 and two more down on the Peninsula in Burlingame and Palo Alto in 2014. And with the addition of Locanda, an upscale Roman Osteria & Bar complete with artisanal cocktails, Craig solidified his reputation as one of the country’s most dynamic and influential chefs.

 

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