Cooking Pasta like an Italian

I’m no chef.  In fact I can categorically say I’m awful in the kitchen.

I don’t mind eating my own creations (toast and brown sauce at university) but I really don’t like inflicting my food on other people.

When it comes to cooking in our household I’d say about 80% of it is done by MrLondonMum.

Don’t get me wrong, sometimes things go right and I even have a few recipes up here on the blog including one for my Christmas ham and a healthy muffin creation.

So when I feel like MrLondonMum is reaching the end of his tether (working all day and then cooking at night), I step in and make something to placate him (devious I know).

I like to make something that will last a few days so it looks like I’ve done a couple of days work ;)

A pasta dish works wonders here!

But pasta I’ve realised can be cooked so wrong.  I either tend to undercook it or overcook it.  Don’t get me wrong I don’t get any complaints (MrLondonMum knows better than to criticise my cooking for fear I’ll never do it again) but I can taste when something isn’t ‘quite’ right.

So with a set of guidelines from ASK Italian ambassador Theo Randall to follow I decided to create a dish to wow!

Now if you’re Italian you’re probably looking at my pasta dish above and screaming at me.  I know I know, I should have used a linguine with a ‘frutti di mare’ sauce.  But I didn’t have any stocked in the cupboards and so I made a fettuccine con frutti di mare, otherwise known as fettucine with a seafood sauce.

First things first I had to get the pasta just right.  These were the tips:

 Pasta DO:

-Use LOTS of boiling, well-salted water

-Cook for two minutes less than the packet instructions and finish cooking in the sauce with a spoonful of cooking water

-Enjoy immediately in small portions in warm bowls or plates – “pasta waits for no man”


-Tip pasta into a colander to drain it - use tongs or a slotted spoon to take pasta out of the water

-Test ‘done-ness’ by throwing pasta onto the walls

-Use too much sauce – coat the pasta, don’t drown it

With those tips in mind I brought a large pan of salted water to boil, put in my fettuccine and then set about creating my sauce.

Now you’ll have to excuse me here, because even though I know I’m a bad cook I like to pretend I’m good and that I’m standing in the Masterchef kitchen.

So with a few ingredients I set about roughly following a recipe (from the ASK Italian cookbook) but putting my own spin on it.

My own spin being drowning my sauce in white wine and then panicking because one of the tips was to not drown the pasta! (Panic over when I decanted half my sauce into some tupperware for use the day after and boiling off some of the excess liquid…).  I also didn’t have any parsley, but I used fresh coriander to make it look like I knew what I was doing!

With the sauce looking quite good and the pasta done to perfection using Theo Randall’s tips, I set about transferring the pasta into the sauce using forks (we have no tongs) and coating it in my seafood concoction.

and voilà a dish to be proud of! (Yes I know I should use the appropriate Italian word here instead of French..).

And pasta cooked in such a way that an Italian would think I knew what I was doing!

(Disclaimer: I’m part of the #RespectThePasta blogger campaign for ASK Italian)

One thought on “Cooking Pasta like an Italian

  1. Pingback: The ASK Italian Fettucine Bolognese Recipe | TheLondonMum

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