I came across this recipe in Saturday’s Telegraph magazine (not mine you understand). I was drawn to it because not only does it include a novelty pasta and three favoured salty ingredients (anchovies, olives and capers) but it also bizarrely contains a smattering of raisins. Would this be (as Gregg and John often say) one ingredient too many? Would it win the approval of my doubting co-blogger? Only one way to find out…
Paccheri are large thick tubes of pasta which you’ll probably have to visit an Italian deli to find, or the deluxe pasta section of your local fancypants supermarket. If you can’t get hold of any, use the largest pasta tubes you can find.
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 15 – 20 minutes
Skill level: easy
- paccheri – 250g
- 1 clove of garlic – crushed
- 10 capers
- 10 black olives
- tin of good tomatoes – drained and cut into slivers
- ½ tin of anchovies – drained
- raisins (yes, raisins) – 1 tbsp
- pecorino – grated – 2 tbsp
- parsley – chopped – handful
- dried oregano – 1 level tsp
- olive oil – generous slug
- s & p
Add the paccheri to a large pot of boiling salted water and cook until al dente – about 18 minutes.
Meanwhile prepare all your other ingredients.
A few minutes before the pasta is ready, make the sauce. Heat the oil with the garlic and add the olives and capers. Stir (and crush) with a wooden spoon.
Add the tomato slivers, raisins, oregano, a pinch of salt, a twist of black pepper and 1 tbsp of the pasta water.
Cook at a high temperature for 15 seconds and turn off the heat.
Add the anchovies and stir – you don’t want to cook them.
Stir in the pasta and cheese.
Serve with the parsley and more cheese.
Verdict: Well this controversial dish came up trumps. Great piquant flavours with the occasion burst of sweetness – this could become a regular midweek treat.
Drink: An after work quicky at the Jerusalem. The Grapefruit ale is particularly good.
Entertainment: Appropriately for a night when we outrageously ate pasta with raisins, we watched ‘Heston’s Tudor feast’. The butterbeer and rice pudding sausages looked good.