Mario Batali posted a recipe for a simple pasta dish two weeks ago. Spaghetti with Oil and Garlic. It reminded me of my college and post-college days when I tired of marinara. I learned how to make a rather tasty sauce full of veggies, making it high in nutritive value. Either I made it too much or my taste buds changed because I stayed away from tomato sauce for a long time. During those years I preferred my pasta tossed with basil, oregano, and parmesan. One night I had 22 friends from church over in my tiny studio apartment (don’t ask how we all fit because I have no idea) and I made this simple pasta for them along with some grilled garlic bread.
After this reminder from Mario, I decided it was time for that simple dish again. While the Tinkyada pasta was cooking, I sautéed some firm tofu, tomatoes, spinach, zucchini, and garlic. I topped it with shredded hard Romano cheese when I plated our dinner. It was delicious and certainly more nutritious than just herbs and cheese. It wasn’t layered with different flavors and textures, but that isn’t the point of simple dishes. Is it? I savor levels of complexity in my food when I have it, but not all the time and most definitely not cooking it myself day after day.
Sometimes, simple is best. And easiest.