Recipe: Pappardelle Roma

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Like most people, I live for pasta – and more specifically, this pasta dish. Juicy baby plum tomatoes, lashings of garlic and a decent glug of rich olive oil will take you a long way to happiness, and the best thing is, it’ll only take ten minutes!
If I’m trying to impress or feeling particularly cheeky, I’ll whizz an extra clove of garlic, a teaspoon of olive oil and a few leaves of basil in a food processor with half a cup of breadcrumbs, then toast it all on a low heat in a dry pan for a few minutes. Your friends won’t be able to get enough of these gorgeously crunchy garlic breadcrumbs sprinkled on top of their pasta.

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Serves 2

½ tbsp good quality olive oil

150g baby plum tomatoes

2-3 cloves of garlic, crushed

180g pappardelle (you can use any pasta you want, but I like this sauce best with pappardelle, tagliatelle, spaghetti or penne)

A few handfuls of baby spinach leaves

Salt and pepper

½ tbsp cream cheese (optional)

1) Preheat your oven to 180°c.

2) In a small roasting dish, toss together your olive oil, tomatoes, garlic and a good liberal amount of salt and pepper. Shake the dish around a little to make sure all the tomatoes are covered in the olive oil and the garlic is well distributed. Roast in the oven for 10 minutes.

3) Throw your pasta into boiling water and leave until cooked. When it’s ready, drain and return to your pan. Add your handfuls of spinach and put the lid on the pan to let the leaves soften a little in the heat.

4) Carefully remove your tomatoes from the oven, and using a silicone spatula, spoon all of the olive oil, garlic and tomatoes over the pappardelle and spinach. Gently mix the pasta to make sure it’s all coated nicely.

5) Serve up, and if you’re so inclined, top with a blob of cream cheese. This may sound unorthodox, but I’ve never found this pasta as satisfying with any other soft cheese!

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