Thursday, 30 May 2013

Fresh Tomato and Tarragon Pasta

As a hobbyist cook I'm often on the look out for culinary inspiration and of late it’s been in extremely short supply. Perhaps it’s something to do with the weather or late onset of spring depriving me of fresh vibrant ingredients to work with.

So thank the Deity of your choosing then for Morrisons.
Whoa, wait, Morrisons, the supermarket right? The very same. I'm not sure if you've been in lately but some of their stores have had, what I can only describe as a fruit and Veg make over.

They've started stocking all kinds of fresh produce both typical and unusual from standard Carrots to Fresh Turmeric Root, Curry leaves, fresh herbs and several varieties of tomatoes to name but a few. All displayed well and cooled by some very futuristic looking dry ice affair. Reminds me of a French Supermarket. Well worth a look even if to marvel at some of the oddities in there

If you’re local to the area try Festival Park or Stone to see what I’m on about, it would appear that Newcastle has yet to catch up

So I bought some fresh Tarragon (for a pie, future post I think) at the weekend plus a medley of little toms and last night I was wondering what to do with what I had left

Ahhhh, pasta, good old pasta. So this is what I came up with

Tarragon and Fresh Tomato Pasta

This just sings of spring, bright vibrant colours and fresh tastes abound here. The chilli kick gives it that extra dimension

I did use Linguine but with hindsight spaghetti would probably work better and the chillies are optional I just wanted some heat

As usual with my dished of late this is unbelievably cheap to make, take note, soon to be student daughter.

Also and quite importantly, this is meat free, so it fulfils my aim of at least one veggie meal per week .. Go Me 

Serves Two

Handful of Cherry tomatoes per person, Halved

3 Cloves of Garlic finely chopped
½ Stick of Celery finely chopped
One shallot finely chopped
Chilli finely chopped (optional)
Handful of Tarragon leaves separated from their stalks
Tablespoon of Tarragon Vinegar
Teaspoon of Tomato puree
½ Glass of white wine
Salt and Pepper
Olive oil for cooking
Olive oil for dressing

Linguine/Spaghetti – enough for each person

Put the water on to boil for your pasta
In a large frying pan, gently soften the Shallot and Celery season with Salt and Pepper
Once soft add the Garlic and Chill then fry for a minute
Add the Purée and cook out for a min or two
Add the vinegar and reduce
Add the wine and reduce to about half
Now add the tomatoes and about 2/3rds of the tarragon, season again, lower to a simmer and cook for about 15 mins, stirring occasionally season to taste if required

When the water is boiling, salt well and add your pasta
Once the water starts to go cloudy add about a ladle of the pasta water to the tomatoes and stir
Once the Pasta is cooked spoon into the pan with tomatoes bringing some of the water with you as you go to loosen the sauce
Toss well and ensure all the pasta is covered in the sauce

Serve into pasta bowls
Finish with grind of pepper, drizzle of good olive oil and finally a few leaves of tarragon on top


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