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Milk Street: The New Home Cooking

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For a fast, flavorful sauce, save that pasta water.

Spaghetti with Lemon, Anchovies, and Capers

30 min 15 min active

We usually just dump it down the drain, but Lidia Bastianich reminds us that the water we cook our pasta in is worth saving. She uses the starchy water to thicken flavorful sauces from strong pantry staples — anchovies, capers, garlic, lemon and red pepper flakes — to make a fast pasta sauce for this weeknight recipe. “You pull out pasta and some kind of basic, intense ingredients,” she says. “Some anchovies. Some olives. Some capers. Of course some good olive oil. You have dinner for four in less than half an hour.”

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