Recently I felt I may have overdone the wild garlic and as my hand hovered over a bunch the other day to make more pesto I decided to take another direction for lunch. Pasta was already on the menu in some guise, being so quick and cheap and popular with 75% of my family (the remaining 25% was out for the day). It was just necessary to have a rifle around the fridge to see what could go with it.
I have mixed feelings about sundried tomatoes – in the right context they can be knock out, conveying their deep intense flavour with some force. By the same token they can overpower other ingredients, be a little shouty if you know what I mean. The answer I find is to let them shine, be the main star (have no one to argue with) and so it is in this pasta dish. Utterly simple, super quick and really plate lickingly good. I’m not sure you could call it a pesto, devoid as it is of pine nuts, basil and parmesan (that comes later) but it is very much that style of sauce which coats pasta but doesn’t drown it.
As you will see below, this takes a matter of minutes to make, literally less time than the pasta will take to cook. A great little number to add to your quick and easy repertoire.
Sundried Tomato Pasta
I have also tried adding a few black olives. This brings it more into tapenade territory but if you particularly like olives they make a punchy and flavourful addition.
8 sundried tomatoes
15g parsley, plus a little extra to sprinkle over before serving
1 small clove garlic
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon chilli flakes
Salt and pepper
300g linguine or spaghetti
Parmesan to serve
Put the pasta on to cook. Place the sundried tomatoes, parsley, garlic, oil and chilli flakes into a mini blender and pulse (alternatively put them all into a jug and use a hand blender). You don’t want it entirely smooth, a bit of texture is good. Taste for seasoning and add a little more chilli if you want or oil if it needs loosening. When the pasta is cooked, drain and then add the sauce. Mix well and serve sprinkled with the reserved parsley and with parmesan if you so wish. Enough for two adults and two children.