For the final of X Factor we had a small group of fans round for a TV dinner! This oven baked pasta is handy, as it can be made in advance and heated when needed.
I put on the water for the pasta and then make a white sauce: to a litre of full milk I add 80 gm butter and 50gm flour and, strirring constantly with a balloon whisk, I bring it to the boil, turn down the heat and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Off the heat I season the sauce with salt, pepper, nutmeg and a generous amount of parmesan. I cook 600 to 700 gm pasta very al dente, mix with the sauce and put in a lightly buttered oven dish. I sprinkle breadcrumbs on top, dot with butter and cook 20-25 minutes at 200°C.
Very satisfying…but can’t say the same for the standard of the singing in this year’s contest!
I always like a pasta dish that does NOT use tomatoes!
I put water on to boil for the pasta, slice half the courgettes finely with the mandolin and finely chop half an onion. I whizz the other half in the Magimix and create a paste with a ladle of cooking water from the pasta, a good spoon of butter and fresh basil. In a non-stick frying pan, I sauté the onion and courgette slices in olive oil and add the courgette paste after a few minutes. I add salt and pepper. I cook a few minutes more, add the cooked, drained pasta with a little cooking water. Parmesan and a final grating of pepper.
PS I didn’t actually do it this way in the photo, but this is the way you’re supposed to!
This should be made with broccoli, or better, sprouting broccoli…but cauliflower is OK.
I put on a big pan of salted water for the pasta and divide a small cauliflower into small florets. When the water boils I add the orecchiette (or any short pasta will do) and after a minute or two the cauliflower. While they cook, I dissolve 4 anchovies in olive oil in a large frying pan with a clove of garlic and some chilli flakes (or fresh chilli). I drain the pasta and cauliflower al dente and sauté them for a minute or two in the flavoured oil.
I’ve tried making orecchiette by hand, but no good. Anyone out there with tips?