Experience Spaghetti Like Jackson Pollock

While living in New York City, why not eat like a legendary New Yorker of the past?


Learn to make spaghetti the way that abstract impressionist Jackson Pollock used to have it with this quick recipe. (via pixabay)

Calais Watkins, Dining Editor

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to walk in the shoes of a famous artist? Well, after trying out the following recipe, you’ll essentially become Jackson Pollock reincarnate.

If you don’t know who Jackson Pollock is, he was a famous painter who worked in abstract expressionism during the first half of the 20th century. “Dinner with Jackson Pollock” is a 2015 cookbook written by Robyn Lea that provides the recipes and backstories to various dishes Jackson Pollock made and ate during his time in New York City.

As described in the cookbook, Pollock did not try spaghetti until he was 18 years old after moving to New York City to study art. What follows is an adaptation of the very recipe Pollock ate, turning the dish into a healthier, vegetarian version of what is found in the cookbook.

With so many modern diets and food trends circulating in and out of popularity, it’s refreshing to get a taste of the past — especially when it’s history that took place in our very city.

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
4 veggie burger patties (or substitute with meat of choice)
½ pound mushrooms, sliced
6 ounce can tomato paste
1 cup water
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
Salt and pepper
1 pound veggie spaghetti
1 cup parmesan cheese for serving

Before cooking, thaw and cut up the veggie patties into small pieces. Set these aside for later.

In a skillet on the stove, add the olive oil and onions and periodically stir these ingredients  until the onions brown. While this is happening, fill a large pot with water and place it over an empty burner. Add three teaspoons of salt to the water and set the temperature to boil.

Back to the skillet. After the onions are brown, add in the tomato paste, mushrooms, garlic, water and veggie patty pieces. Stir this until combined and season to taste with salt and pepper. Cover the skillet and let the mixture simmer until the veggie patties are cooked through. 

While the sauce is simmering, add the veggie spaghetti to the now-boiling water and stir until cooked. Once cooked, drain the water.

When both the noodles and sauce are ready, add the sauce to the pot of spaghetti and stir thoroughly. 

Serve with the option of parmesan cheese toppings and you’re good to go!

Important note: Veggie noodles have a different texture than regular noodles and veggie patties are known to lack moisture. Add a drizzle of olive oil to the final product before serving in order to keep the noodles from sticking together. Otherwise, you’ll find yourself with a giant blob of spaghetti.

Email Calais Watkins at [email protected]