Spaghettini with baby peas

13 infamous April Fools’ Day hoaxes
FreeImages.com/Patrick Moore
6. Spaghetti tree harvest -- In 1957, the BBC current affairs program "Panorama" featured a three-minute clip describing the "exceptionally heavy spaghetti crop" in Switzerland. The clip showed what was purported to be Swiss farmers harvesting spaghetti strands from trees and laying them in the sun to dry. The prank tricked hundreds of viewers who called the BBC asking how their very own spaghetti bush to grow the food at home.

This simple recipe relies on a short list of ingredients, so superior quality — especially top-notch Parmesan cheese — is of the utmost importance. If you’d like, toss in strips of chicken breast or butterflied shrimp that have been sauteed in olive oil; or, if time permits, grill chicken breasts, cut them into diagonal strips, and arrange them atop the spaghettini mixture. For a quick weeknight dinner, simply drain a 6-ounce can of chunk white water-packed tuna, flake, and toss into the spaghettini.

12 ounces spaghettini

1 tablespoon olive oil

6 cloves garlic, minced

½ cup chicken broth

1 cup frozen baby peas, thawed

½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper, or to taste

1/8 teaspoon salt, or to taste

½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

2 tablespoons butter

Garnish (optional): freshly ground pepper, freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat; add salt, then the spaghettini. When the water returns to a boil, stir occasionally to separate the spaghettini. Reduce the heat to medium-high and cook for about 8 to 10 minutes, or according to package instructions, until al dente.

While the spaghettini is cooking, heat the oil in a large nonstick saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the garlic; cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the chicken broth, peas, salt, and pepper; stir gently until heated through, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat.

When the spaghettini is done, drain well; return to the pot. Add the chicken broth mixture; toss gently over medium heat until heated through. Add the Parmesan and butter; toss just until the butter is melted. Taste and adjust the seasoning.