Pasta is good and all, but sometimes I get bored with tomato bases. This gem is the perfect solution, and healthy to boot. The just-burnt tomatoes, the zing of lemon, the rich green beans; it makes for a lovely, summery dinner.
What goes in:
Two 250g punnets of cherry tomatoes, sliced in halves
Olive oil spray
320g dried wholemeal spaghetti
2 cups frozen broad beans, thawed and peeled
2 teaspoons olive oil
4 shallots, thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, chopped
50g baby rocket leaves
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon rind
75g fetta, crumbled
How you do it:
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius. Line a tray with baking paper and pop the tomatoes on, cut-side up. Season with pepper, give them a light spray with oil and roast for 10-15 minutes. I reckon you get the best flavour when the skin just starts to blacken against the tray.
While the tomatoes are roasting, get a large saucepan of salted water boiling and cook the pasta. The original recipe I worked from said to throw the broad beans in at the last minute of cooking, but I actually forgot this time and they were a nice firm texture. I think either way would work. Once cooked, drain the lot.
Heat oil in a non-stick frying pan over medium heat and cook the shallots and garlic for about two minutes or until soft. Add everything else – the tomatoes, rocket, lemon juice and rind, parsley and pasta mixture – and toss it all together. Serve it up topped with roughly crumbled fetta and cracked pepper. (Just leave the fetta off to keep your vegan friends happy.)
A word on broad beans…
My dear sister Candice got me onto broad beans. While they are seasonably available fresh, you can also pick them up in most supermarket frozen sections and keep them in your freezer to add a pop of colour and fibre, especially to salads.
I actually don’t follow the packet instructions because I find the beans go squishy and mushy. That’s not ideal.
Instead, I just rinse them a few times under the tap as I wait for the hot water to come through, then let them sit in a saucepan in hot water for a few minutes. They’ll quickly turn the water cold but that’s okay – you’re aiming just to defrost them, not cook them. From there, it’s super easy to peel off the lighter green shell to expose the vibrant green inner bean. I’ll admit, it’s a bit fiddly and time-consuming but so worth it.
* I tore this recipe out of the newspaper but later found an online version here, which goes through some of the nutritional benefits of the spaghetti’s ingredients. Handy!