Mark Bittman's variation incorporates fried breadcrumbs, which provide wonderful texture to the slithery pasta. We added a handful of whole sage leaves just because we had them.
1/3 cup olive oil
2 T. minced garlic
1/4 cup whole sage leaves
1/2 cup breadcrumbs (either fresh or dried are fine)
salt and pepper
1 pound spaghetti
1. While the spaghetti boils, heat the oil in a saucepan, then fry the garlic over medium heat until it's golden—keeping a watchful eye on it, as just a few seconds can turn mellow deliciousness into scorched nastiness. Remove with a slotted spoon.
2. Add the sage leaves to the hot oil, and let them fry until they are dark and curly. Remove them from the pan.
3. Add the breadcrumbs, and fry until crispy and brown.
Once the pasta is cooked, drain it and pour it into a large bowl. Top with the fried garlic, sage and breadcrumbs, and add more oil if you like your pasta on the slippery side. Season with salt and pepper. Serve proudly to even your staunchest meat-eating guests.