Leftover pasta, while rare, never seems to have the same flavour and consistency as it did before refrigerating. The sauce has congealed, the noodles are tough, and nuking it in the microwave doesn't help much. But this quick and easy fix will make it taste like new.
Photo by Luca Nebuloni.
To give your tomato-based pasta a second chance at tasting delicious, Josh Cohen at Food52 suggests all you need is a skillet, some olive oil, and a little garlic. Coat your skillet in olive oil, then heat up six thinly sliced garlic cloves over medium heat. Wait for the slices to turn golden brown along the edges, then add your pasta leftovers and stir occasionally.
The sauce should darken a bit from the oil and garlic, giving you some umami flavours similar to slow-roasted tomatoes. Once the sauce turns brick red, you're ready to plate. Just add some grated Parmesan cheese and chow down.
You can come up with your own variations too, if you like. Add basil, thyme, rosemary, or other herbs to the mix. Or chop up some vegetables to add in there too. This method, which Cohen calls "the spruce up," is an easy fix that's so tasty, you'll you wish all your pasta was leftover pasta.