|spaghetti with wild leeks and roasted tomatoes|
Last evening, in between torrential rainfall and the odd crack of thunder (which felt quite surreal) I was able to gather up some of the wild leeks, but if you don't have either them or wild garlic (ramps or ramsons), then increase the amount of fresh garlic (to perhaps four cloves) and replace the wild garlic with a handful of wild rocket and some fresh chives. It won't be exactly the same, but it will be delicious.
Skill level: Easy
400g dried spaghetti
2 tbsp olive oil (the oil from preserving the mi cuit tomatoes)
a knob of butter
1-2 x small garlic clove, finely chopped
a large handful of fresh flat leaf parsley (about 3 tablespoons), roughly chopped
a small handful of wild leeks (leaves only - about 2 tablespoons), roughly chopped
10 x fresh mint leaves, shredded
mi cuit tomatoes in oil (I use the flavoured oil to fry the herbs and garlic)
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Pecorino cheese (or Parmesan), to serve
wild leek flowers, to serve
- Cook the pasta in lightly salted boiling water according to the directions - I usually find the pasta is al dente after 10 minutes. Definitely use dried pasta rather than fresh spaghetti, since it has a better texture for this dish. Drain and return the pasta to the saucepan, reserve a couple of tablespoons of the cooking liquid.
- Meanwhile, heat the oil and add the butter. When the butter has melted, add the garlic and gently fry for 2 minutes.
- Add the chopped herbs and tomatoes: stir well to coat with the garlicky oil. Cook for another minute.
- Stir into the drained pasta. You can add some of the cooking liquid if the pasta looks too dry.
- Season to taste.
- Serve with grated pecorino and some of the wild leek leaves (which are edible!)
- Replace the tomatoes with a few sliced chestnut mushrooms.
- Add 2 tablespoons of fresh basil, chopped.
- A few clams work very well as does chopped chorizo.
- For extra punch, add 1 teaspoon of chilli flakes.