Although food generally fills my constant thoughts, I too, have those days where I’ve zero idea what to cook for dinner. Sometimes, with no motivation, I find deciding what to cook can actually be harder than the cooking itself don’t you think? Especially on busy weeknights; if I make one more batch of spag bol, I’m going to go crazy. Enter here – ‘Pizza Pasta’; or it could also be called ‘throw everything in’ pasta. Basically there’s no real recipe for this dish, you just use anything you’d normally see on a pizza, a supreme pizza probably. From salami to olives, red capsicum, cherry tomatoes and ham, think chorizo, bacon, prosciutto or leftover barbecue chook. Use as little or as many ingredients as you like, just make sure you throw in onion and garlic and if you’re like me – lots of chilli.
Spaghetti’s my favourite but as with most pasta dishes, substitute with whatever you have lying round in the cupboard. Penne, rigatoni or shell pasta would also work. And use flavoured olive oil if you happen to have it? I just used the last of the ‘basil and garlic’ infused olive oil that Mum gave me on her last visit. Which reminds me, I used to make my own chilli oil – I should do that again (basically I just added a ridiculous amount of chilli flakes in to one of those olive oil decanter thingy mabobs) and viola. Anyway, back on track sorry…
Make this pasta.
Make it if you like pizza.
Make it if you like pasta.
Make it if you’ve got no idea what to cook for dinner tonight;
or simply make it just to try something new.
It’s easy, quick and delicious. The perfect answer to the age old question, “what’s for dinner?”
makes enough for 4
– Add fresh basil or parsley if you have it.
– I make this for me and Cork Daddy and love having leftovers in the fridge to eat cold, the next day (my girls won’t have a bar of it).
– I always use the marinated, flavoured olives in chilli and garlic and throw in some of the olive oil from the container. It helps give it an extra kick! Do this.
– Cooking easy pasta dishes like is, is all about the timing. Time it so that the pasta sauce is ready to go the moment the pasta is cooked (so that the pasta isn’t sitting round in the strainer going all soggy). Yuck.
– If you have a big frypan – you should be able to add the cooked pasta straight in to the sauce to combine. But, if you’re cooking a whole packet of pasta and don’t think it will fit in the frypan – strain the pasta and return it and the pasta sauce in to your big pasta pot. (PS That’s why cooking shows always make cooking pasta look so easy – because they never cook too large an amount, so that they simply add the cooked pasta in to the frypan that the sauce was cooked in). Oops, I’m ranting again aren’t I. Ingredients below.
1 x packet of spaghetti (or other type of pasta)
1 x Spanish onion, finely sliced
A couple of garlic cloves, crushed (or substitute for minced garlic in a jar)
A good handful of spicy salami, diced (substitute for bacon, prosciutto, chorizo, pepperoni)
A good sprinkling of chilli flakes (to taste)
1 x red capsicum, finely diced
A good handful of cherry tomatoes, cut in half
A good handful of mushrooms, finely sliced
A good handful of marinated olives in olive oil, chilli and garlic (and a good glug of the flavoured oil)
A really good handful of baby spinach or rocket
Any type of cheese for adding at the end (feta, parmesan, mozzarella all work well here)
A good glug of olive oil, plus more to drizzle over the top
- Throw the pasta on to cook in a big pot of salted water (and whatever you do – please do not overcook the pasta! Soggy pasta is a sin). Also, when the pasta is cooked – reserve a mug full of the pasta water to add to the pasta sauce.
- Meanwhile, in a large fry pan, add a good glug of olive oil and fry off the onion, garlic, salami, chilli flakes and capsicum.
- Once they’re looking nicely cooked, add in the other ingredients that don’t need as much cooking time – so, tomatoes, mushrooms and olives and continue to cook.
- By now the pasta should be ready – make sure you’re keeping an eye on it!
- Combine the cooked pasta and everything from the frypan and throw in the spinach leaves and cheese as well as a splash of the pasta water to loosen up the sauce. Give it a good mix and eat straight away, with a drizzle of olive oil and some more chilli flakes for good measure.
If you happen to make this pasta, please leave your comments below. Would love to hear what you think!