Aglio e Olio with Farro Spaghetti, Kale and Hazelnut Breadcrumbs

Taste a traditional sauce from the Abruzzo area of Italy with this wonderful pasta dish.


  • Salt and pepper
  • 10-12 large Tuscan or black kale leaves, stemmed
  • About 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), divided
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup hazelnuts, chopped
  • 1/4 cup flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • 1 pound farro spaghetti or whole wheat spaghetti
  • 8-10 good-quality jarred anchovies
  • 1 red chili pepper, seeded and finely chopped, or 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 5-6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • Freshly grated nutmeg


Bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt it, add the kale and cook until just tender, 3-4 minutes. Transfer to a plate with tongs, let cool and thinly slice. Reserve the pot of water.

In a small skillet, heat about 1 tablespoon EVOO, one turn of the pan, over medium heat. Add the butter and heat until foaming. Add the panko and nuts and toast until golden, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat; season with salt, pepper and the parsley.

Bring the reserved pot of water to a boil, drop in the spaghetti and cook to al dente. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the starchy cooking water.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat about 5 tablespoons EVOO over medium heat. Stir in the anchovies until they melt into the EVOO. Lower the heat a bit, stir in the chili pepper and garlic and cook for 2 minutes. Add the kale; season with nutmeg.

Stir the reserved strachy cooking water into the sauce and kale. Add the pasta and toss for 1-2 minutes; season with salt and pepper. Serve the pasta in shallow bowls and top with the hazelnut breadcrumbs.

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