Makes enough to fill about 30-35 small ravioli
- 350g peeled and chopped butternut squash (2cm cubes)
- Olive oil
- Sea salt
- Black pepper
- 1/2 small red onion, peeled and thinly sliced
- 15-20g pecorino/grana padano cheese
- Ground nutmeg/ground cinnamon
- Preheat the oven to 200C/180C Fan/Gas 6
- Place the butternut squash in a large bowl with about 2stp olive oil, season with salt and pepper, mix it up.
- Tip the pieces onto a baking tray and roast in the oven for 18-20mins.
- Meanwhile, add the onion slices to the bowl used to season the squash. Drizzle another teaspoon of olive oil and season to taste.
- Once the butternut squash has had 20mins, sprinkle the onion slices over it and cook for another 10mins.
- Leave it to cool for 5mins and then tip it into a high sided bowl. Blend it into a puree with a hand blender.
- One completely cool, stir in the cheese and season to taste with salt, pepper and nutmeg. I also like to add a dash of ground cinnamon.
Serves 4-6 people.
Chef’s tip: Make this at least 6 hours before you plan on eating it. The flavours will develop the longer you leave it.
- 500g beef mince (a bit less/more works just fine if you can’t get the exact weight)
- 100ml red wine
- 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced or finely chopped
- 1/2 a celery stick, diced small
- 1 sprig of fresh rosemary, chopped
- 2 tins of plum tomatoes
- 1x 200g tube of tomato puree
- Dash of Worcestershire sauce
- Dry basil
- Dry oregano
- Salt and pepper
- Olive oil
- Heat a tablespoon of oil in a large pan on a medium-high heat.
- Add the mince and use a whisk to break it up and remove any chunks. Season the mince with salt and pepper.
- Cook the mince until all of the liquid has evaporated and the meat is starting to brown/stick to the pan (don’t worry, it will come off). This will take your bolognese to another level of flavour.
- Add the red wine and cook for about a minute to release the alcohol, then add the onion, garlic, celery and rosemary.
- Cook for another 5mins or so to soften the onions then add the tomatoes. Break them up with a spoon/masher/knife if you want smaller chunks.
- Take one of the tins and fill it 2/3 with water, and add that to your sauce.
- Add about 2/3 of the puree (you might need to add a bit more later), a dash of Worcestershire sauce, and a good sprinkle of basil and oregano – I’d say around a tablespoon of each.
- Re-season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Turn down to simmer with a lid on for as long as you possibly can leave it. Minimum should be an hour but if you can leave it for hours, occasionally stirring it then even better.
- Taste it every time you stir and see if you need to add any more seasoning/puree.
- When you put your water on to boil for the pasta, add a pinch of sugar to the sauce to really bring it all together.
- Serve with your choice of pasta and maybe some garlic bread 😉
Gennaro Contaldo’s recipe, goes perfectly with my fresh pasta
- 250g beef mince
- 250g pork mince
- 1 sprig of rosemary
- 1 medium onion
- 1 carrot
- 1 stick of celery
- 150ml red wine
- 2tbsp puree
- 900ml-1ltr beef stock
- Heat 2-3tbsp olive oil in a high sided frying pan on a medium-high heat.
- Add the mince, season with salt and pepper, and use a whisk to break it all up. It will stick to the pan at first but it will come off as it cooks.
- Cook for 5mins, then add the rosemary sprig
- Cook until the liquid has evaporated and the meat is brown and golden
- Add the wine and let it bubble away for a minute
- Add the vegetables and stir, then add the puree. Let this cook for 2-3mins.
- Add the beef stock and stir.
- Turn down to a low simmer and cook for around 90mins or until it’s thickened up.
- Serve with your choice of pasta 🙂
The rule for this recipe is 1 egg per 100g of flour. Around 300g makes enough for 4 people.
- 300g ‘Tipo 00’ flour (some supermarkets call it pasta flour)
- 3 large eggs
Method – mixer
- Assemble the mixing attachment, add all of the ingredients and mix on a low speed (2-3) until it forms a ball of dough.
- If it’s struggling, add a tiny dash of water.
- Swap the mixer for the dough hook attachment and use a low speed to knead the dough for 5-10mins.
- Wrap the dough in clingfilm and rest it for at least 30mins.
- When ready, use a rolling pin or pasta machine to roll out the dough super thin and cut it as required.
Method – hand
- Add the flour to a large bowl and make a well in the middle
- Break the eggs into the well
- With a fork or your hands, gradually incorporate the flour into the eggs until well mixed
- Knead (stretch and roll) until it’s a soft smooth dough
- Wrap in clingfilm and rest it for at least 30mins.
- When ready, use a rolling pin or pasta machine to roll out the dough super thin.
Chef’s tip: If you want to add a bit of spice to this, you can throw in a few slices of fresh chilli when you add the spinach.
Ingredients (serves 2 people)
- 3-4 rashers of smoked bacon
- 1 large chicken breast
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed/chopped
- 50g fresh spinach
- 500ml milk
- 150-200g spaghetti/linguine
- 60-70g green pesto
- In a large frying pan/wok/low sided large saucepan cook the bacon with some olive oil until crispy
- Add the chicken to the pan and season well with salt, pepper and the garlic powder
- Cook until all the pink in the chicken is gone and then remove the chicken, placing it in a bowl to the side (keep the bacon in the pan).
- Add the onion and garlic to the pan and cook until the onions are soft and brown
- Add the spinach and once it’s wilted, add the milk
- Bring it to the boil and then add the dry pasta.
- Stir continuously for around 7-8 minutes, until the pasta is cooked (you may need to add more milk and cook for longer if using thicker pasta or wholewheat)
- Mix the chicken back in and add the pesto
- Serve and sprinkle generously with parmesan
This is sort of my twist on a carbonara. It’s creamy and delicious 🙂
Serves: 2 people
- 1 large chicken breast (or 2 small)
- 1 onion
- 2 cloves of garlic
- Half a red chilli (or half a teaspoon of chilli powder) – this is optional to add a bit of spice but you can leave it out
- 2 slices of smoked bacon
- 100ml white wine – drink the rest of the bottle with the food 😉
- 200ml cream (single or double, whichever your prefer)
- 200g spaghetti
- Parmesan to serve
- Try adding some red or green pesto after the cream.
- Try adding a squidge of tomato puree before the cream.
- Try adding a handful of spinach just before the cream.
- Get a large frying pan on a medium heat with some olive oil.
- Get everything prepped so that you’re ready to get cooking. Chop your onion, mince or chop your garlic, chop the chilli into tiny pieces, slice the bacon into small strips and dice your chicken.
- Add the onion to the pan and cook until soft and starting to brown.
- Add the garlic and chilli to cook for 1 minute. Don’t let the garlic brown.
- Add the bacon and stir until it’s cooked.
- Now add your chicken with a good sprinkle of salt and pepper and stir it around.
- At this point, put a pan of water on to boil for spaghetti if you’re using dried. Cook as you normally would while doing the rest.
- Once the chicken is almost cooked through, add the wine and turn the heat down a bit so it can simmer for 5-10mins. This will allow the alcohol to cook away and leave you with the flavour.
- If you are using fresh pasta, get it going now.
- Now turn the pan down to a low heat and add your cream. Make sure you don’t add the cream until the pan has cooled down a bit or it will go lumpy.
- Drain your pasta and add it to the pan. You can turn the heat off at this point as it will stay hot enough.
- Serve and sprinkle with parmesan 🙂