Archive for the ‘Pasta & Noodles’ Category

Quick vegetable noodles

Monday, November 5th, 2007

Serves 4

Preparation time less than 30 mins

Cooking time 10 to 30 mins

Ingredients
100ml/3½fl oz light soy sauce
100ml/5fl oz vegetable stock
2 limes, juice only
1 garlic clove, crushed
2.5cm/1in piece ginger, peeled, cut into matchsticks
1 tbsp cornflour, mixed with a little water to create a paste
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 red onion, finely sliced
200g/7oz shiitake mushrooms, finely sliced
1 red pepper, finely chopped
1 small red chilli, chopped
1 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
4 asparagus spears, sliced, blanched in boiling water
400g/14oz egg noodles, cooked according to packet instructions
1 tsp chopped fresh coriander, to garnish
Method
1. Place the soy sauce, vegetable stock, lime juice, garlic and ginger into a pan over a medium heat.
2. Bring the mixture to the boil and cook for five minutes, then add the cornflour paste and stir well to thicken the sauce.
3. Meanwhile, heat the vegetable oil in a large pan over a high heat. Add the red onion, shiitake mushrooms, red pepper, chilli, coriander and asparagus and stir-fry for 5-6 minutes, until just softened.
4. Add the noodles and mix together well.
5. To serve, place equal portions of the noodle and vegetable mixture into each of four bowls, pour over the sauce and top with fresh coriander.

Sesame green tea noodles

Monday, November 5th, 2007

Serves 2

Preparation time less than 30 mins

Cooking time 10 to 30 mins

Ingredients
¼ packet green tea noodles – these Japanese noodles usually come in 4 small bundles per pack (200g/7oz)
2 tbsp sesame seeds
1 tbsp sesame oil
1-2 tbsp (light) soy sauce
Method
1. Boil up a large pan of water until simmering.
2. Boil the green tea noodles for 4 minutes.
3. At the same time heat a non-stick wok or frying pan and dry roast two tsps of sesame seeds until golden, then remove.
4. Wash the noodles thoroughly under cold water and drain.
5. Put the wok or pan back on the heat and add one tablespoon of sesame oil. As it heats, toss in the sesame seeds and once they start to pop, almost immediately, add the noodles and 1-2 tsp of light soy sauce.
6. Mix thoroughly and pile onto serving plates. Serve.

Goats’ cheese and mushroom gratin

Monday, November 5th, 2007

Serves 2

Preparation time less than 30 mins

Cooking time 10 to 30 mins

Ingredients
200g/7oz linguini
1 tbsp olive oil
2 shallots, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
75ml/3fl oz double cream
50g/2oz baby spinach leaves
salt and freshly ground black pepper
75g/3oz goats’ cheese, sliced
pinch paprika
Method
1. Preheat the grill to its highest setting.
2. Cook the linguini in boiling salted water until al dente. Drain and set aside.
3. Heat the olive oilin a medium-sized pan and sweat the shallot and garlic for two minutes or until softened but not coloured.
4. Add the cooked linguini, double cream, spinach, salt and freshly ground black pepper and stir well. Pour into a small gratin dish.
5. Put the slices of goats’ cheese on top, sprinkle with paprika and place under the grill for five minutes or until bubbling and the goats’ cheese has browned slightly. Serve.

Creamy tagliatelle gratin

Monday, November 5th, 2007

Serves 1-2

Preparation time less than 30 mins

Cooking time 10 to 30 mins

Ingredients
1 tbsp oil
3 rashers vegetarian bacon, chopped
2 spring onions, chopped
150ml/5fl oz double cream
1 free-range egg yolk
30g/1oz Brie, chopped 150g/5oz fresh tagliatelle, cooked according to packet instructions and drained
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Method
1. Preheat the grill to medium.
2. Heat the oil in a frying pan, add the vegetarian bacon and spring onions and fry for a few minutes until golden-brown.
3. Remove from the heat and stir in the double cream, egg yolk, Brie and cooked pasta. Season, to taste, with salt and freshly ground black pepper and spoon into an ovenproof dish.
4. Place under the grill for a few minutes until golden-brown and serve immediately.

Noodle gratin

Monday, November 5th, 2007

Serves 1

Preparation time less than 30 mins

Cooking time 10 to 30 mins

Ingredients
200g/7oz medium egg noodles
30g/1oz butter
30g/1oz plain flour
salt and freshly ground black pepper
150ml/¼ pint milk
55g/2oz cheddar, grated
sprig fresh parsley, to garnish
Method
1. Preheat the grill to its highest setting.
2. Place the noodles into a large heatproof bowl and pour over enough boiling water to cover. Leave for 4-5 minutes, or until softened, then drain.
3. Heat the butter in a small pan and add the flour, stirring well. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
4. Add the milk gradually, stirring continuously. Bring the sauce to the boil and simmer for 3-4 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in half the cheese.
5. Pour the sauce over the noodles and mix well, then spoon the noodles into a small ovenproof dish and sprinkle over the remaining cheese.
6. Place under the hot grill for 1-2 minutes, or until golden-brown.
7. To serve, garnish with a sprig of parsley.

Pasta primavera

Monday, November 5th, 2007

Preparation time less than 30 mins

Cooking time 10 to 30 mins

Ingredients
150g/5¼ oz fine green beans
3 medium courgettes
1 large clove of garlic
75g/2½ oz parmesan
2 tbsp olive oil
500g/17½ oz packet of fresh wholemeal pasta
150g/5¼ oz baby carrots
150g/5¼ oz asparagus tips
4 tbsp crème fraîche
Method
1. Bring a large pan of water to the boil. Trim the green beans, slice the courgettes into 1cm slices and finely chop the garlic. Grate the parmesan.
2. Heat the oil in a medium-sized frying pan and fry the courgettes over a high heat for five minutes, adding the garlic halfway through. Both should be a nice golden colour.
3. When the water boils, add the green beans and carrots, bring back to the boil and cook for one minute. Add the asparagus tips and the pasta and boil for 3-4 minutes.
4. Drain the pasta and vegetables in a colander, reserving 4 tbsp of the cooking water. Return to the pan and add the courgettes and garlic. Mix the cooking water with the crème fraîche and fold through the pasta. Sprinkle with the grated Parmesan and serve.

Macaroni cheese

Monday, November 5th, 2007

Serves 4

Preparation time less than 30 mins

Cooking time 10 to 30 mins

Ingredients
250g/9oz macaroni
40g/1½oz butter
40g/1½ plain flour
600ml/1pint 1½fl oz milk
250g/9oz grated cheddar
50g/2oz grated Parmesan
Method
1. Cook the macaroni in a large saucepan of boiling salted water for 8-10 minutes; drain well and set aside.
2. Melt the butter over a medium heat in a saucepan slightly larger than that used for the macaroni. Add the flour and stir to form a roux, cooking for a few minutes.
3. Gradually whisk in the milk, a little at a time. Cook for 10-15 minutes to a thickened and smooth sauce.
4. Meanwhile, preheat the grill to hot.
5. Remove the sauce from the hob, add 175g/6oz of the cheese and stir until the cheese is well combined and melted.
6. Add the macaroni to the sauce and mix well. Transfer to a deep suitably-sized ovenproof dish.
7. Sprinkle over the remaining cheddar and the Parmesan and place the dish under the hot grill. Cook until the cheese is browned and bubbling. Serve straightaway.

Soup noodle broth

Monday, November 5th, 2007

Serves 1

Preparation time less than 30 mins

Cooking time 10 to 30 mins

Ingredients
425ml/¾ pint chicken stock
pinch of ginger
pinch of medium curry powder
2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
85g-110g/3-4oz dried noodles
110g/4oz sweetcorn, carrots and mangetout
¼ red pepper, sliced
drizzle of soy sauce
drizzle of sesame oil
1 tbsp honey
small handful of fresh mint and coriander
1 egg, beaten
Method
1. Place the chicken stock into a medium saucepan and bring to the boil.
2. Add the ginger, curry powder and garlic and heat for a further 1-2 minutes.
3. Add the noodles, sweetcorn, carrots, mangetout and red pepper. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and then cook for 10-12 minutes.
4. Stir in the soy sauce, sesame oil and honey.
5. Finally, add the fresh herbs and then stir in the beaten egg, and cook for a further 2-3 minutes.
6. Transfer to a serving dish and serve at once.

Spaghetti with tomato and basil sauce

Monday, November 5th, 2007

Serves 2

Preparation time less than 30 mins

Cooking time 10 to 30 mins

Ingredients
200g/7oz spaghetti
3 tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1½ tomatoes, diced
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 tbsp basil, chopped
2 tbsp chopped herbs, including basil, parsley and chives, for garnish
Method
1. Bring a large pan of water to the boil, and cook the spaghetti in it, according to packet instructions.
2. Drain, then toss in one tablespoon of olive oil, to prevent sticking.
3. Heat one tablespoon of olive oil in a frying pan, add the chopped garlic and diced tomatoes, and sauté for 4-5 minutes.
4. Season to taste, and lightly crush down the cooking tomatoes.
5. Add the basil and the remaining tablespoon of olive oil.
6. Toss with the prepared spaghetti, and garnish with the chopped herbs, to serve.

Tortellini with spinach and ricotta

Monday, November 5th, 2007

Serves 4

Preparation time less than 30 mins

Cooking time less than 10 mins

Ingredients
For the pasta
700g/1½lb ’00’ flour, plus extra for dusting
3 medium free-range eggs
semolina, for dusting (optional)
For the filling
200g/7oz spinach, cooked in salted water and chopped
200g/7oz ricotta
30g/1oz grated parmesan
large pinch freshly grated nutmeg
salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the butter, sage and pine nut sauce
small handful of pine nuts
handful sage leaves
50g/2oz butter
parmesan, grated or in shavings
Method
1. For the pasta, pour the flour into a mound onto a flat surface and make a well in the centre. Crack the eggs into the well and gradually mix with either a blunt knife or your hands. When the dough has become a thick paste use your hands to incorporate more of the flour.
2. You can sieve any remaining flour and use the sifted flour while you knead the dough to stop it sticking to the surface and to your hands, but be careful not to make the dough too dry. Knead until well blended and the dough is soft and flexible. Don’t worry if you haven’t used up all the flour.
3. Leave the pasta to rest for about 20 minutes with a bowl inverted over it or leave it covered in cling film. You can sieve any leftover flour again and save this flour for rolling out the pasta.
4. Meanwhile, for the filling, in a clean bowl, mix the spinach, ricotta, parmesan and nutmeg well, and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
5. Divide the fresh pasta into four and keep three portions under a bowl while you roll and stuff one quarter. This prevents the pasta from drying out. Roll out the pasta into a long, wide strip about 1mm in thickness, either by hand or using a machine. When you can see your hand through it, it is ready for stuffing. Cut the strip in half.
6. Place teaspoons of the filling in a line down the centre of one of the strips about 5cm/2in apart. Place the other strip directly on top. Press the air out from around the filling by pushing down the pasta around them sealing them in. Now take a small wine glass or round cutter measuring about 7cm/3in across and cut out circles of pasta around each mound of filling.
7. They can be cooked straight away or stored in fine semolina for up to two hours. You can also freeze them at this stage and then cook them from frozen when you are ready.
8. To cook, bring a large pan of salted water to the boil and gently lower in the tortellini. Cook for about four minutes or until the pasta is soft but not floppy.
9. While the pasta is cooking make the sauce. Preheat the grill to hot.
10. Toast the pine nuts under the grill or in a dry frying pan. They are quick to brown so don’t take your eyes off them.
11. Put the pine nuts, sage leaves and butter into a frying pan and melt the butter taking care not to burn it. Add about a tablespoon of the pasta water and stir together to emulsify the sauce. Remove from the heat.
12. When the pasta is done, drain it and toss with the sauce in the frying pan. Serve immediately sprinkled with parmesan.