Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Pasta Puttanesca(ish) a storecupboard standby

Pasta puttanesca is one of my favourite pasta dishes, the punchy flavours really sing to me, and as it's something M isn't a fan of, it gets relegated to being cooked when he's away or late home. However, this Puttanesca(ish) pasta is a firm favourite of mine, as it gives more than a nod to the original, without  requiring a trip to the shops as all the ingredients are things I typically have in our store cupboard.

I originally blogged this a fair few years back, with a woeful picture, and in the same post as some eccles cakes. I was eating leftovers for lunch today, and thought I'd rewrite it here and give it the benefit of some new photos too.

It's perfect for an entirely unseasonal supper (which so often at this time of year is just the thing you need) - the kick of chilli is warming, and the saltiness of the anchovies provides a lovely savouriness. I find it's best eaten from a bowl on one's knees, snuggled under a crochet blanket. But that may just be me.

Pasta Puttanesca(ish)
Serves 2

2 cloves garlic
1/2 red chilli - I use a nice big one, this is not the place for something that blows your socks off
1 tin anchovies in olive oil, chopped up
200g cherry tomatoes, halved
1 tablespoon tomato pesto
Basil to serve

Cook your pasta in a pan, as you would usually - this sauce takes about 10 minutes to cook, so the two should finish almost together.

Drain 1 tablespoon of oil from the anchovies into a small frying pan (the rest can be discarded) and warm through over a medium heat
Add the chilli, garlic, and anchovies to the oil and cook down for 3-4 minutes. The anchovies will start to melt down
Add the halved cherry tomatoes, and allow to cook down for about 5 minutes more, use the back of a wooden spoon (or a potato masher) to break them down towards the end of cooking.
Stir in the tomato pesto and season with just pepper (you have enough salt from the anchovies).
Once you've drained the pasta, put it back into the pan and stir the sauce over, making sure it's thoroughly coated
Sprinkle with basil leaves for a lovely freshness, and serve as suggested above. Crochet blanket optional.


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