Pasta with cauliflower sauce
( SERVES 4 )
Photo by Tamara West
Pasta dishes are a brilliant out-of-the pantry meal. Dried pasta shapes can be interchanged easily and fresh staples such as shallots or onions and garlic are usually to hand. Pecorino can be replaced with parmesan or leave it out if you prefer.
|½||Cauliflower, cut into small florets|
|¼ cup||Raisins, golden|
|1 pinch||Saffron threads|
|3 Tbsp||Olive oil|
|4||Shallots, thinly sliced|
|4 cloves||Garlic, crushed|
|1 can||Chopped tomatoes, in juice, 400g|
|2 Tbsp||Pine nuts, toasted|
|1 splash||Red wine vinegar|
|1 to taste||Salt & freshly ground pepper|
|½ cup||Pecorino cheese, freshly grated|
|3 Tbsp||Fresh parsley|
- Cook cauliflower florets in lightly salted boiling water until bite-tender, drain and refresh under cold water to arrest cooking. Drain well on kitchen paper.
- Soak golden raisins in ¼ cup warm water and set aside. Steep saffron in 2 Tbsp warm water and set aside.
- Heat olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat, add shallots and garlic and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Stir in tomatoes and bay leaf and cook, stirring occasionally for 5 minutes.
- Meanwhile cook pasta in plenty of boiling salted water according to directions on packet or until al dente. Drain, reserving some of the cooking water. Place pasta in a large bowl.
- Add raisins and saffron with their liquid, cauliflower, pine nuts and vinegar to the frying pan and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Cook until hot. Discard bay leaf . Tip sauce over hot pasta and toss well to combine. Add some of the reserved cooking water if you need to thin the sauce. Add parsley leaves. Serve in warmed pasta bowls sprinkled with pecorino.