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Posts Tagged ‘Tomato’

A Lebanese twist to tomato sauce with gentle spices and almonds; a lovely variation on a theme. The proportion of sauce to spaghetti is also very different to how the Italian’s make pasta so there is a lot of sauce for this dish. This worked for us but you could use the same amount of sauce for a greater quantity of pasta and therefore serve more people if you’d like.

The spices are subtle and warming and the pinches can be generous if you like.

Spaghetti with a Rich Tomato Sauce & Toasted Almonds – serves 2 generously

  • 2 x 400g tins chopped tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • 3 garlic cloves, grated
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • pinch ground cinnamon
  • pinch ground allspice
  • pinch grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • pinch ground pepper
  • 200g spaghetti
  • 50g flaked almonds, toasted
  • 2 tbsp chopped parsley

Put the tomatoes, tomato purée, garlic and sugar into a pan and simmer over a low heat. Stir frequently and simmer for 30 minutes.

Stir in the olive oil, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, salt and pepper and cook for a further 20 minutes.

Meanwhile bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, add the spaghetti and cook according to packet instructions (usually between 10-12 minutes). Reserve 3 tablespoons of the cooking water and then drain the cooked spaghetti.

Return the spaghetti to the cooking pot with the reserved cooking water and the tomato sauce.

Toss well and then serve sprinkled with the almonds and parsley.

Wine Suggestion: we drank a Valpolicella Ripasso with this dish and the ripe, juicy spices went well with the warming spices of the sauce.

(Original recipe from The Lebanese Kitchen by Salma Hage, Phaidon, 2012.)

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Sometimes the simple recipes are the best.

Spaghetti with raw tomato and rocket – to serve 4

  • 4 plum ripe plum tomatoes
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 dried hot chile
  • 2 tbsp capers
  • 3 tbsp black olives
  • 3 tbsp rocket
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • 300g spaghetti

Cut the tomatoes in half and squeeze out the excess juice and seeds, and chop the flesh coarsely. Crush the garlic with a teaspoon of sea salt with the flat of a knife. Rinse the capers, and pit the olives. Roughly chop the rocket.

Combine the tomatoes with the garlic, the crumbled chile, capers and olives. Season really well, add the olive oil and leave aside for 30 minutes.

Cook the spaghetti in boiling salted water until al dente. Drain, and stir the pasta into the tomatoes. Add the rocket. Toss to coat and season with black pepper.

Serve with some more olive oil.

Wine Suggestion: You want to find a wine as fresh as the ingredients being used, so try a youthful Dolcetto from the Piedmont region in north-west Italy.

(Original recipe from Rose Gray and Ruth Rogers’ Italian Two Easy, Clarkson/Potter, 20o6.)

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Greek Feast – Stifado

This was so easy and super tasty. All the prep can be done before your friends arrive and then it just simmers away and makes the house smell lovely. Serve with steamed potatoes.

Warning: The meat is supposed to be marinated for 24-48 hours – I only realised this on Saturday afternoon so mine was marinated for about 5 hours – still was fab.

Moshari stifado (Veal Stifado but we used beef) – Serves 6

  • Make a marinade from: 120ml olive oil, 250ml dry red wine, 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar, 3 bay leaves, 20 black peppercorns, 10 allspice berries, 4 garlic cloves.
  • Add 1kg stewing beef pieces, turn to coat, cover and let marinate in the refrigerator, turning occasionally, for 1 to 2 days.
  • Blanch 2kg small pearl onions or shallots in boiling water for 1 minute, drain and peel.
  • Heat 250ml olive oil in a large heavy pan over a medium heat. Add onions in batches and cook each batch for 8 – 10 minutes until lightly browned all over. Remove each batch with a slotted spoon.
  • Remove meat from marinade and strain liquid into bowl – reserve the flavourings
  • Add meat to pan used to cook the onion and cook for about 8 minutes until lightly browned all over.
  • Pour in reserved marinade and season with salt & pepper. Add 2 of the bay leaves, 6 of the peppercorns and 6 of the allspice berries.
  • Add 750ml puréed fresh or canned tomatoes (we used pasatta). Cover, bring to boil then reduce heat and simmer for about 30 minutes.
  • Add the onions and 3 of the reserved garlic cloves. Recover and simmer for 1.5 hours until meat and onions are tender and the sauce is very thick.
  • If the sauce has not reduced enough, remove meat and onions with a slotted spoon and then boil the sauce rapidly. Stir meat and onions back in before serving.

Julie

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