Oooooooooh – Miss J, 1
Whenever we go to the supermarket, I always make a beeline for the fresh egg pasta. It just tastes so much better and less rubbery than most dried varieties and cooks in a fraction of the time.
On sale this week was some beautiful strozzapreti, which works great with chunky vegetable and tomato sauces, but is equally lovely with pesto because it really holds on to the sauce without getting sticky or stodgy.
Reaching the vegetable aisle, I chucked in some fresh basil for the pesto and grabbed some roast sweet potato and butternut squash, intending to make a mash for another night, but the greens and oranges looked so lovely together, a meal that combined them all just had to be made.
This dish works well because of the warmth of the pasta, the fresh and aromatic kick of the pesto and the sweetness and saltiness of the roast veg. Lovely winter food.
Here’s how to make four rather generous portions or six smaller ones…
For the roast veg:
- 300g sweet potato
- 200g butternut squash
- Sea salt and cracked black pepper
- 2 tbsp olive oil
For the pesto:
- 35g parmesan (we use a veggie version that isn’t officially parmesan but tastes very similar)
- 50g toasted pine nuts
- 1 clove of garlic
- 60g fresh basil (washed)
- 5 tbsp olive oil
- sea salt and cracked black pepper
For the pasta
- 500g fresh egg strozzapreti pasta
- pinch sea salt
- Put the oil a large roasting dish
- Peel and de-seed veg, chop into 2 cm slices and then roughly chop into pieces
- Spread the veg evenly in the dish and season generously with sea salt and cracked black pepper
- Roast at 200C for 20-25 mins until soft and browned at the edges
- Toast the pine nuts in a dry pan until lightly browned – don’t burn them1
- Finely grate the cheese
- Tip about half the cheese, three quarters of the pine nuts and all the other pesto ingredients into a food processor
- Blitz, then stir in the remaining cheese and nuts and season to taste
- Boil the pasta for about 4 minutes
- Stir in the pesto and plate up
- Stack the roast veg on top and serve while still warm