Nigel Slater’s Real Fast Food is the only cookery book I’ve ever replaced. The pages of my old copy were splashed with oil and chunks were falling out, so I upgraded to a later edition.
A is the cook in this household but when I cook, it tends to be one of these recipes, because they use ingredients you have in the cupboard and the freezer, don’t take long (most can be done in 30 minutes or less), and are ‘proper’ food, just as the title says.
A was out at a meeting recently and I fancied something savoury and filling after a cold morning at the keyboard. Nigel’s pasta with sundried tomatoes, anchovies, olives and capers, for example, and even though I only decided to make it when I was already hungry, we had all the ingredients to hand.
This is my interpretation. The quantities you see here are a bit random because I was using up the jar of capers and the sundried tomatoes.
I also finished a bag of Mafalda Corta pasta we bought because it was on special offer somewhere. I’m not sure I’d go for it again, I find it hard to spot the point where it’s sufficiently cooked in the middle but not yet soggy. I put a handful in the picture so you can see that it’s like little strips of frilly ribbon.
All you do is gently heat the rest of the ingredients while cooking the pasta.
Then mix them up and serve with cheese. I don’t buy Parmesan much anymore because it kept going green and furry before we could eat it up. And living in Somerset, a nice mature bit of Cheddar grated over the top is perfectly appropriate, don’t you think?
I ended up with this yummy plateful that looked a lot, but no problem, it could be finished off cold. Good in theory, but strangely enough, it all disappeared before I returned to the computer.
We love lots more of the recipes in Nigel Slater’s Real Fast Food, and for very impatient cooks there’s even a section that tells you how you can speed up your cooking! It’s a great book for students or young people leaving home and might persuade them to abandon junk food in favour of the real thing.
What are your favourite quick recipes? Do you make them up or rely on cookery books?