Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The Empty Fridge Pasta

I wish I lived next to the David Jones Food Hall.

Really I do. Because it saves me the trouble of waking up to an empty fridge and then having the devil and the angel duking it out in my head first thing in the morning before my coffee about whether to go out and buy groceries.

Today I went with the devil, and left my fridge exactly the way it was. Instead, I headed over to my pantry and pulled out the following residents:

Ok fine I lied. Mr. Parmesan and Anchovies and Tomato Paste came from the fridge. But you get the drift.

Oh and I forgot these two friends in the picture:

So what exactly am I making?

Well a while ago I came across this box of really nommilicious Penne Arrabiata we bought from a place up in East Ryde. It seemed simple enough to replicate, especially on days where you're just cooking for one. And with that, I decided to give it a shot today.

I often find that I cook best when I'm cooking for myself. There's something about the lack of a need to impress anyone, or do something superbly fancy that I really like. Portions are also small enough so its easy to handle, and life is simple. Sweet. Effortless.

I made this before guzzling down my morning coffee...

...and this is coming from a person who considers themselves a bigger hazard to road safety when driving without her morning coffee than someone who's driving drunk.

Make it. It's easier than pancakes.

Penne Arrabiata cheat guide
Serves 1

Note: I use the measuring term "handfuls" because this is a recipe for one. Generally speaking, bigger people = bigger hands = bigger portions. See my logic? Oh and feel free to use fresh herbs and chilli. I was desperate.

2 handfuls of penne (roughly 1.5 cups for me)
1/4 tsp dried chilli flakes
200g canned diced tomatoes
1 tblsp tomato paste
2 small anchovy fillets
1/2 small onion, diced
1 clove of garlic, crushed
1 tsp dried parsley
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 tblsp olive oil

Shaved parmesan
Cracked pepper (optional)

1.) Cook penne in boiling water until al dente. Drain and keep warm
2.) Heat oil to a small saute pan
3.) Add anchovies. Cook until anchovies have melted a little
4.) Add chilli flakes into the oil. Gently stir to release flavours.
5.) Add onion and garlic and cook until onion is transparent
6.) Pour in diced tomatoes and bring to simmer
7.) Add tomato paste, dried parsley, dried oregano
8.) Simmer until sauce is reduced and thick.
9.) Add cooked penne into the sauce and quickly reheat pasta. This will help the sauce thicken onto the pasta.
10.) Remove from heat and serve. Garnish with shaved parmesan and cracked pepper.

Nom it while it's hot.

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