Lemony courgette tagliatelle with a crunchy breadcrumb topping

Serves 3 gluttons

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Tonnes of tagliatelle, pappardelle, linguine (by this stage in the game, everyone knows how much they like)

4 medium courgettes

1.5 tsp table salt

1 (or 1 and a half if you like spice) red chilli, deseeded and chopped

1 lemon (zest and juice)

2 garlic cloves, chopped or crushed

100g butter

4 slices of crusty white bread (or sourdough, or a couple of rolls)

Olive oil

Tonnes of parmesan, grated, to serve

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  1. To make the pasta, we followed Nigel Slater’s recipe on the Guardian, which is here: Nige’s home-made pasta recipe . However, and I’m quite amazed by our gluttony here, but we did 1.5 times this recipe – which should have served 6, but, um, 3 of us ate it all up pretty bloody quickly. This pasta recipe will also obviously work with pasta that hasn’t been home-made (it IS worth it, but it does take a couple of hours, if you’re moving quite slowly and drinking quite a lot of wine at the same time especially) but in any case, get egg pasta – so much tastier. This is Seil, making the pasta
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  3. 40 mins before the pasta is ready, grate 4 courgettes on the large-holes of the grater into a sieve, pour 1.5 tsp table salt over and mix it up, then leave to drain over a large bowl. Every 5-10 minutes, squeeze the courgette out with a large spoon then mix to make sure it drains evenly.
  4. After 25-30 mins of the courgette draining, melt the (generous) amount of butter in a large frying pan, then add the grated courgette and spread out so that it cooks evenly.
  5. After 10 mins of cooking, add the chilli, garlic and lemon zest, stir well then add the lemon juice. Season well with pepper but be careful with the salt as some will remain from the draining process.
  6. Start cooking the pasta. When it’s cooked, drain it reserving a couple of ladlefuls of cooking water.
  7. While it cooks, whizz the bread into coarse breadcrumbs. Then, in another frying pan, heat a few tbsp olive oil (don’t be shy) on a medium-high heat. Add the breadcrumbs, and fry in the oil until golden brown then remove from the pan and put on kitchen roll.
  8. When the pasta is cooked, put the courgette mix in with a tbsp or two of cooking water, a small knob of butter and toss well with a noodle spoon if you have it – it’s quite hard to dissipate but persevere…
  9. Serve with the crispy breadcrumbs on top, then parmesan.

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NB: we didn’t quite finish the pasta on round one, so (a little drunk by this point), mixed any leftover with an egg, some grated cheddar cheese, rolled it into little nests, then fried it in some melted butter and it was the best drunk snack/pasta pudding ever.

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2 thoughts on “Lemony courgette tagliatelle with a crunchy breadcrumb topping

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