Tuesday, 8 April 2014


Other than Pasta Carbonara, Pascal's other speciality is Tomato & Basil Pasta. I actually prefer this to carbonara, as it feels healthier and fresher (despite the amount of Parmesan & grated cheddar cheese I always add). Once again it is really simple and easy to make and is absolutely delicious. Arabella loves pesto pasta where you literally mix a jar of ready made pesto with spaghetti or such - this is a much more flavoursome and nourishing meal.

Ingredients for 4 people (good hearty portions but it's too good not to indulge):

2 tbsp of olive oil
500g pasta (any shape you prefer - we like fusilli as it catches the little bits of basil)
6 tomatoes
100g basil
5 cloves of garlic
300g creme fraiche (I use half fat as it's always good to save calories somewhere & you can't taste the difference)
Grated cheese & Parmesan, to serve

First things first, cut the tomatoes into small chunks and heat the olive oil in a pan. Then once warmed, add the tomatoes and season with some salt and pepper.

Cooking the tomatoes is what takes the longest in this recipe (around 40 minutes) - apparently our tomatoes aren't as juicy as in France, so if it looks a little dry, add half a cup of water. I did this and it helps make the sauce more liquid. Continue to cook the tomatoes over a low to medium heat, stirring regularly.

While the tomatoes are cooking, it gives you time to prepare everything else. Boil the water for the pasta and add the creme fraiche to a saucepan and season with black pepper but don't start to heat yet.

Add the basil to a bowl and use scissors to cut into small pieces.

Crush 3 cloves of garlic.

After about 30 minutes of the tomatoes cooking, they should resemble a tomato sauce. Add in the garlic as well as start heating the creme fraiche (you want to warm this but not boil it). Also cook the pasta in salted boiling water according to the packet's instructions.

The tomatoes should be ready after about 40 minutes. Drain the pasta and then add the sauce, creme fraiche and basil.

Slice in the remaining two garlic cloves and mix all together.

Finally serve and enjoy (with some cheese if you fancy)!!

Delicious!! This is the first pasta dish Pascal ever cooked for me and he has continued to do so for the past five years and I never get bored of it. It is slightly time consuming making the tomato sauce but it is much lighter than buying a tin and certainly doesn't taste sweet or manufactured. I would really recommend trying this - just make sure you don't invite too many friends round as you seriously won't want to share and if you are a piglet like me, you will definitely want to have seconds!!

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