Pontine Pasta

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Dawn: Intriguing title again Andrew!

Andrew: Indeed Dawn! I invented this dish on the Italian island of Ponza using local and fresh ingredients. The prawns were bought at the harbour and were fresh out of the sea that morning. In the garden there were these round chillis that I have never seen since.

Dawn: And I suppose you are going to tell me it was eaten on a terrace by moonlight with a nice chilled Pinot Grigio?

Andrew: Yep! Something like that! Shall I get on?

Dawn: You do that while I book my holidays!

Ingredients

Serve 4

Long pasta of choice (this is cooked with linguine, but spaghetti or bucatini work just as well)

300g uncooked prawns

2 spring onions, finely chopped

1 clove of garlic, peeled and crushed

1 red chilli pepper-deseeded, halved and finely sliced

1/2 glass dry white wine

8-12 baby plum tomatoes

1/2 tablespoon of ricotta or cream cheese

Olive oil

Salt and pepper t season

Andrew: This dish is quickly made and the sauce will cook at the same time as the pasta, so have all your ingredients prepared and ready.

Method

  • Bring a large pan of salted water to a boil and add the pasta-50-75g per person. Cook as per suggested cooking instructions time.
  • In a deep frying pan heat a little olive oil, then gently fry the spring onion and garlic for a minute to release the garlic aroma.
  • Add the chilli and cook for a further minute.
  • Throw in the prawns. They will quickly turn pink as they cook. Turn the prawns after a minute to ensure both sides are cooked thoroughly.
  • Add the white wine and mix in the tomatoes. Cover the pan for one minute. This will allow the tomatoes to ‘pop’ and the wine to largely evaporate.
  • Drain the pasta then add to the pan with the prawns. Mix well and stir in the ricotta.
  • Transfer to a serving bowl and serve.

Andrew: Buon appetito!

Dawn: I can’t wait to try it.

Keep following our blog https://forfoodlovers.wordpress.com and our Twitter feed @Love_Food_UK for more tasty and special recipes.

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Fabulous Frittata

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Frittata is one of those incredibly versatile Italian dishes which in this rather Anglicised version is a fantastic way of using up leftover ingredients, or whatever is growing in your garden at the time.

Dawn: Brilliant! This is just what we want from this blog! Affordable, in season, available and not at all wasteful!

Andrew: And also extremely easy, with a little patience and care.

Dawn: So Maestro! What is the difference between a frittata and a Spanish Omelette?

Andrew: No that isn’t a cue for one of my corny jokes! Not much really. A Spanish Omelette is basically a combination of potato, onion and egg, and is quite thick when served. You may have seen this as tortilla. Fritatta is also a form of omelette. It tends to be thinner, but is also served sliced.

Ingredients

Serves 6

Any combination of vegetables, meats, seafood  and herbs: see below for suggestions

1 tbsp of olive oil

Four eggs

Method

  • Heat a heavy bottomed 8 inch/20 cm frying pan on a gentle heat.
  • Add 1 tbsp of olive oil, and fry your chosen filling until tender, or until your meat or seafood is cooked through thoroughly.
  • Mix your eggs together in a bowl or mug, then pour into the pan, cooking on a low-medium heat for about 10 minutes.
  • The top of the frittata will start to set at this point. Here you have two options: either heat the pan under a grill until browned on top, or flip the frittata over, placing a plate on top of the pan, turning it over so it drops onto the plate, then slide it back into the pan to finish cooking for 2-3 minutes.
  • Turn out onto a plate or chopping board, allow to cool and then cut into 6- 8 slices.

Dawn: Great with a salad, new potatoes and some runner beans I would guess.

Andrew: I have just done three of these for my colleagues for our Christmas buffet lunch.

Dawn: Three! What was the price?

Andrew: Value range eggs, about £2.50 for a dozen, and vegetables I had in. I estimate about £5 for the lot!

Dawn: Tremendous value! Budget eggs outside of the City are often cheaper, starting at about £1.50 per 12 plus eggs so worth knowing, Now tell me about these fillings

Andrew: There are no rules, but I did these:

  1. Mixed coloured vegetables- red onion, yellow pepper, red chilli and a few frozen peas.
  2. Courgette, mushroom and thyme.
  3. Sausage, red pepper and chilli powder.

Dawn: I have some prawns and spring onion in my fridge. Chorizo and red pepper might work too. And shoudl these be cooked before adding? 

Andrew: The beauty of this dish is that ‘anything goes’!

Dawn: Or ‘anything goes in’!! Amazing! When do we add the vegetables or whatever we have in at the time, Andrew?

Andrew: I pre-cook the additional ingredients as it speeds up the overall cooking time and add them pre-adding the eggs. And what makes this another firm favourite is that this is just the kind of good value an oh, so easy to do recipes we want to promote. Keep an eye out for @Love_Food_UK on Twitter for our other fantastic recipes.