Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Recipe: Pasta with a Sardine Sauce: cheaper than chips

The original recipe was called Pasta de Sardine but I have changed it so much that I am happy to lay claim to what turned out to be quite a tasty dish, odd as it sounds.
I didn't cost it out so can only be vaguely general about this, but it made two helpings (that's dinner tomorrow sorted) and it can't be much more than 60p per portion.  Now extreme frugal but pretty good for a main meal.  You could have garlic bread or something similar with it; I didn't!

Pasta with a Sardine Sauce
a tin of Morrison's value sardines in tomato sauce
A dollop of philly light (or any soft cheese) - about a tbsp
About a tbsp lemon juice or more, to taste - I think I used a bit more, maybe about 20mls
a good pinch of smoked paprika

A little oil or fat for sauteing (I used bacon fat)
a small onion, peeled and chopped
about 80g frozen mixed peppers, cut into small bits
two or three mushrooms (I used three but they weren't that big), chopped to the same size as the onion and the peppers
A squidge of garlic puree

Salt and pepper
Some grated parmesan or other cheese - I used value Italian hard cheese and I'm not sure how much weight - about 20g, more or less
90g (raw weight) pasta - I used spirals (value - what a surprise!).

Put the pasta on to cook in salted water

Heat the fat in the pan, tip in the mushrooms and peppers and saute very, very gently until it is all very soft.  Be careful it doesn't catch.

While this is going on open the sardines and tip the entire contents into a bowl.  Add the lemon juice and smoked paprika and stir really well.  The fish should break up into little bits.  Next time I might zizz it to make a smoother sauce.

When the onion and peppers are soft, turn the heat up slightly and add the mushrooms and garlic and cook, stirring for a minute or two.

By now the pasta should have cooked.  Drain and keep warm..

Pour the fishy mix into the pan with the vegetables and stir well to mix everything up.  Then add one tbsp soft cheese and keep stirring while it melts in.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  If it is very thick you could add some milk/yoghurt/cream.  It was fine for me, no need to slacken it at all..

Pour in the pasta, keeping the pan over a low-ish heat and mix it all together well.  Serve with the grated cheese sprinkled over.

And I forgot to take a photo!

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