Fettucine pasta from scratch
My eyes have been dazzled by so many heart-shaped things in the past few days. Tastespotting and Foodgawker are awash with red and pink. Now, I certainly wouldn’t complain if someone made me a heart-shaped, red-and-pink-baking-splosion, but personally, I would blindfold myself first. Not because I hate red or pink or love hearts…I just don’t want my colour receptors to get too exhausted, ya know?
Also…I would be so much more floored by something simple, but made from scratch of course, with things from the garden (esp. tomatoes and basil).
Ok, so it helps that I think Italian food is the most romantic food evar (not that I claim this is at all authentically Italian). I know this might confuse you, because there is nothing less romantic than slurping noodles, and accidentally flicking your partner with some red sauce. Also, look at how ugly those noodles are. I’ll put it out there now: UGLY. But that’s the point… to me there’s nothing more romantic than being in your PJs (or er…not, I guess), ready to snuggle and watch a stupid movie, and being presented with a hearty plate of something delicious, prettiness be damned. Delicious and made with heart. Being comfortable in front of your partner to slurp, with no make up on, or any of those sucky-inny-granny-pants under an uncomfortable dress. Besides, I like to think my man provides me with enough eye candy as it is ;)
…you can finish rolling your eyes now, and make this damn pasta.
Chunky tomato and mushroom sauce
makes enough for 3 (lunch the next day, anyone?)
- large handful chopped tomatoes (super ripe)
- about 400g tomato passata (or more fresh tomato if you have it)
- large handful halved button mushrooms
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2 fat cloves garlic, finely chopped
- salt and pepper to taste, cooking oil
- optional extras: kalamata olives, pitted, fresh torn basil, feta, parmesan, chevre, extra virgin olive oil (pref cold pressed)
Heat a few Tablespoons of oil in a large or tallish frypan on medium heat, throw in mushrooms and onion. Let sizzle away until golden brown bits appear on the edges of the onion and mushroom. Reduce head to low, add tomatoes, and let simmer away while you make up the noodles and sort the rest of the ingredients. Remember to season, taste, and season again before putting over your noodles.
makes enough for 3 (lasts till next day if mixed with sauce) – or halve recipe to serve 2 if you’re having dessert
- 1c plain flour (to start with) – I snuck in some wholemeal flour, but only a few tablespoons
- 1/4c semolina flour (or just use more plain flour)
- 2 eggs
- about 2 T water
Note: If possible, do this the morning of, or 3 hours before you do the dinner
Mix water and eggs in a medium bowl, then add flour a little at a time until you get a soft piable dough. Knead until smooth. Cover in a container and let rest for 3 hours if making ahead.
Heat a large saucepan half full of water (with a dash of salt) on high heat to bring to a rapid boil. Meanwhile…
Uncover, dust with flour and a working surface. Split dough ball into two and roll out one until it’s less than 2mm thick, flouring constantly to prevent sticking. Fold into thirds and cut into 1cm wide strips. Dust with more flour and unravel, then pick it all up and mix together with your fingers. Set aside and repeat the above step with the other dough ball.
Add noodles to the boiling water, and cook for about 3 minutes or until cooked but not mushy (best to taste test).
Drain or spoon out with a noodle spoon, top with sauce, then optional toppings. Drizzle with olive oil and serve.
If keeping for the next day, stir sauce with the noodles then add toppings.