Real simple

What I said on Monday (but posted on Tuesday) was really true: I had no idea what to make for supper.

So that afternoon I went to my routine dermatology appointment, and while waiting for my name to be called, I picked up a Real Simple magazine to leaf through and there amongst all the glossy pages and coordinating colors I spied it: our dinner. It was on a two-page spread that listed off ten ways to cook eggs, all of which were real simple. Of course. (Or, of course not. Because they listed quiche as one of the simple dinners and I do not count quiche as “real simple.” It involves grating cheese and sauteing vegetables and making a crust and beating eggs and measuring things. This proves that the real simple mag editors have no handle on reality whatsoever, thank you very much.)

However, the recipe I zeroed in on did indeed look simple. True, there weren’t any greens in the meal (except for the fresh herbs and two tablespoons of herbs don’t count for a vegetable serving in my book), but that didn’t bend me out of shape too much. A meal without peas or spinach or green beans wouldn’t kill anyone. (I hoped.)

So after the doctor gave me a once over and an entire box of free medicine—whoot!—I hopped into my bunged up minivan and sped home to whip up my real simple supper.

While the water boiled for my eh-spaghetti (helpful hint: read it with a Spanish accent), I bustled outside to collect my herbs—basil, parsley, chives, thyme, and oregano. Back in the kitchen I minced the aforementioned green things along with a couple cloves of garlic. After that it was mostly a real simple (but kind of chaotic) process of assemblage that went something like this:

1. Saute the garlic, add the herbs and give a stir, toss in the eh-spaghetti and a little pasta water. Set aside.

2. Fry some eggs.

3. Assemble: plate pasta, top with fried egg(s), sprinkle with grated Parmesan and black pepper, and drizzle with olive oil.

4. Eat.

Moral of my tale: go the doctor when you don’t have any idea what to make for supper.

Spaghetti with Fresh Herbs and Fried Eggs
Adapted from Real Simple magazine

Enhancement suggestions: oven-roasted tomatoes, fresh tomatoes, sauteed zucchini, peas, etc.

1 pound spaghetti
4-8 tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup assorted fresh herbs (parsley, basil, oregano, chives, thyme, etc.), roughly chopped
4-8 eggs, or as needed
½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
salt and black pepper

Cook the spaghetti according to the package directions. Drain (reserving about a half cup of the pasta water) and set aside.

Saute the garlic in several tablespoons of olive oil. After a couple minutes, add the herbs and cook for 30 seconds or so. Add the pasta and toss to coat. (If it seems a little dry, splash in some of the pasta water.) Cover with a lid to keep warm and set aside.

In a separate pan, fry the eggs, making sure that the yolks stay runny.

Plate the spaghetti, top with an egg or two, a hearty drizzle of olive oil, a sprinkling of cheese, and salt and black pepper to taste. Dig in!

This same time, years previous: a driving lesson


  • the domestic fringe

    I would never have though of eggs with spaghetti. But, I'm intrigued. I may pull this one on my family and see what they think. Thanks for expanding my mind.

  • Margo

    I just got my issue yesterday and noticed 3-ingredient recipes on the front. Rolled my eyes. They can be remarkably out of touch with a day-in, day-out home cook.

    My husband makes a very similar dish to this that should please your veg requirements: top cooked pasta with a dippy egg, steamed asparagus (throw it in with the pasta cooking), lots of pepper and grated Parmesan. The herbs would be nice with that too. And you know, you could always have sliced tomatoes on the side. hooray for tomato season!!!!

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