Simple Spaghetti Recipes: Sweet Basil and Chilli Spaghetti, when East meets West

I will start by saying that being Italian I grew up eating literally tons of Spaghetti or any kind of Pasta you can think, of, and I loved it. I love it today and always will. Then when I was 18 I moved to Thailand and spent over ten years of my life living in this beautiful country and falling in love with the food, the smells, the people, everything! This recipe is my intent of creating a  fusion of Eastern and Western Cuisine: a  super simple spaghetti recipes, where the ingredients I loved and remind me of my childhood are blended with what I loved of my Asian life; that’s How the Sweet Basil and Chilli Spaghetti recipe came about.

I hope you will like, it, I know it might not be everyone “cup of tea” but if you like spicy food and a sweet touch of delicate basil, then this might actually be the dish for you.

Sweet Basil and Chilli Spaghetti

Now for many of you that might have traveled to Thailand or any Asian country, you will probably know one of the main ingredients of these places are the  chilies, the small, red spicy, super hot little plant that add so much flavour to many of the Asian Dishes.

One of the most popular dishes you can find in every corner of Thailand is the Chicken with sweet basil and chilli.

In my Pre Vegan Era, I ate so much of it, is not even funny; I used to love it especially with a nice plate of basmati rice next to it.

Becoming Vegan push me to set aside some of the food I used to love, but it didn’t stop me from becoming a bit more creative and try to fuse together two countries, two traditions in one single dish and a dish that would be Vegan!

So meet my Sweet Basil and Chilli Spaghetti: Cheap, quick and super easy to do! What else can you ask from a recipe?

Ingredients: serving 4 people

  • 1 kg of spaghetti (I like number 5 as a size)
  • 1 box of tomatoes cherry, approximately 15 to 20 small  cherry tomatoes  in the box
  • 2 garlic cloves peeled
  • 1 tbs of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 handful of Sweet basil (is not so easy to find sweet basil, usually Asian stores will have it, if not you can replace it with normal Basil but the Sweet one is much better)
  • 5 small red chilies (I buy them frozen and I find them really good and easy to work with)
  • 1 tbs soy sauce
  • pepper
  • 1 tsp of brown sugar

Let’s Cook:

First of all, take a big pot and fill it up with water, bring it to boil and salt it to taste. This will be the water for the spaghetti. Once the water is boiling  put the spaghetti in and cook it for about 8 /9 minutes till they get “al dente”.

In the same time while the spaghetti is getting ready let’s prepare the sauce.

Wash the tomatoes, the basil, the chilies.

Chopped the cherry tomatoes in small pieces, almost an inch each, and set aside.

Peel the garlic, chopped as well in very tiny pieces, almost like grains.

One of my favorite Recipe Books for Pasta

One of my favorite Recipe Books for Pasta

Take the red chilies and cut them in mini rings, also very small in dimensions. pay attention when you cutting the chilies not to put your hands near your face especially eyes, and rinse well your hand once you have finished cutting them.

Take a medium-size frying pan and put the olive oil to heat up, once hot, take the garlic and drop it in the frying pan, lower the heat to medium making sure the garlic doesn’t  burn.

Once it begins to take some color, take the tomatoes and chilies and drop them in the frying pan. Add the soy sauce and pepper to your taste.

Let it cook on medium heat and keep stirring the tomatoes until the skins become soft and they start to break. Once they appear to be half cooked, add the basil that you will have previously chopped ( doesn’t have to be too small, I like some of the leaves to be whole) and put the basil in the mixture.

Lower the heat and continue stirring for maybe half a minute. You don’t want to cook it too much.

By now you should definitely have a strong aroma all around the kitchen, it’s the fusion of the chilies with the basil.

All is left to do is to take the Spaghetti and put them in the frying pan just for a minute mixing them well and allowing all the ingredients to penetrate the pasta leaving a delicate pink reddish color to it.

And serve! Now just talking about it it makes me hungry, I don’t know about you.

This is not a dish for everyone, as it can be really spicy, but for all of you out there that like the hot cuisine I hope you will enjoy it.



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11 Responses

  1. AV2001 says:

    Hey Barbara,

    I’ve really enjoyed reading this article and I can’t wait to try out the recipe

    The dish looks so tasty!!! Is it okay to replace brown sugar with white sugar, or will it get too sweet?

    Thanks in advance for answering my question and for this detailed blog post. Keep up the good work Barbara!

    • Barbara S. says:

      The sugar is used only to   lessen the acidity that sometimes comes from using the cherry tomatoes. But it’s not sweet at all, it will help taking that mildly acid taste of the tomatoes and blend better with the rest of the ingredients

  2. Vincent says:

    I love the recipe and I love spaghetti so it can’t get any better. I like it since I am not really a big cooker to have something easy and quick to put togther seems the idal solutution for me. 

    I ma gonna try it out tonight and let you know. I just hope it’s not too spicy !!

  3. Peace says:

    I love spaghetti and sauce, in any shape or form they come. Spaghetti is one of my favorite foods. 

    Although I am not a vegetarian, I would definitely try your Sweet Basil and Chilli Spaghetti. It’s simple and can be made in record time. 

    I think I like the idea of mixing cultures through food. And your creativity to keep eating the kind of food you enjoy, even when you became a vegetarian is applaudable. 

  4. Barrywesley says:

    I really want to commend you for taking out time to write about this simple spaghetti recipe. I always love spaghetti  in  any sauce, I just love them but  when you add sweet basil to it they can only get better.  I love spicy food as well, so the combination is perfect plus basil  can facilitate the digestion and fortifies the digestive and nervous system and can be a good remedy for headaches and insomnia,

  5. Thanks so much for sharing, the recipe is so great, It is good to try something different every now and again and what you are sharing will put a smile on lots of faces.

  6. Just love new recipes like this. Thanks so much for all the details. Much appreciated.

  7. deraj says:

    I love Sweet Basil Spaghetti but always used to eat in restaurants. Now I know how to cook it, so I will definitely try to make it by myself. Thanks for this Spaghetti recipe.

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