I love the combination of the soft pasta with the crispy Panko bread crumbs. I first had a dish like this at a restaurant out of town. I did not order the dish because I thought the combination of bread crumbs and pasta would not work. My brain, at the time, did not connect the two. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind adding bread crumbs to chicken, frying it, and placing that atop pasta for Chicken in a Basil Cream Sauce. That dish is over the top delicious. My dinner partner kept fawning over their pasta with bread crumbs dish – fawning so much that I finally asked if I could have a bite. Oh my!!
In this version, I have kept the super buttery browned bread crumbs with the parsley and garlic on the pasta. I also add leeks and lemon to this dish to give it a little boost in flavor and I just love the combination now. I brown the leeks and they get a soft and crispy texture that I just love. Remember when cooking with leeks to clean them well or your dish will suffer. I take the whole leek and cut off the dark green part and the root part. I then cut the leek in half and take off the outside layer on each half. I then chop the leek. Once chopped, I place the pieces in a bowl of cold water. I mix the leek well and separate the pieces because that dirt wants to hide in every layer. It doesn’t take long and it is well worth the effort.
This meal pairs so well with a nice red wine. Tonight I had a beautiful Shiraz that I’d had on hand to serve to guests. I find that the taste of Shiraz suits a majority of guests because of its subtle flavor. I hope you enjoy this dish as much as I did and are pleasantly surprised by the combination of the Panko bread crumbs with the pasta.
- 8 oz. spaghetti
- 2 leeks, cleaned and chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 4 Tbs. butter, divided
- 2 Tbs. + 1 tsp. olive oil
- 1 1/2 tsp. salt, divided
- 1 1/2 tsp. pepper, divided
- 1/2 c. Panko bread crumbs
- 1 Tbs. lemon juice
- 1/4 c. chopped parsley
- Cook pasta according to directions. Drain and return to pot.
- Meanwhile, heat a medium-sized frying pan over medium heat. Add 1 Tbs. butter and 1 tsp. olive oil to the pan. Add the leeks, 1/4 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Leeks will brown a little. Add the garlic and cook for 2 minutes more. Remove from heat.
- In another frying pan over medium heat, add the Panko bread crumbs and cook for 1 minute or until the Panko browns a little. Add 3 Tbs butter, 1/4 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper. Stir to mix well and cook for 1 minute more. Remove from heat.
- Add the leeks, 2 Tbs. olive oil, 1 tsp. salt, 1 tsp. pepper and lemon juice to the pasta and stir well. Add the parsley and stir.
- Place pasta in serving bowl and top with bread crumbs. Serve.