Now let’s be completely honest. I love recipe books but from the time I sit on the couch, cup of tea in hand, diligently choosing a new recipe to try and writing down all the ingredients I need, to when the time comes to cook that recipe, it’s morphed into something quite different. You see, I get so inspired by possibility – and what’s in the fridge – I veer wildly off track and just make it my own!
This recipe here is intended to inspire you and I truly hope you will make it your own too. Don’t like broccoli? No problem, swap in pak choi or another favourite veg. Don’t have our Pesto Princess Rocket Pesto on hand? Fear not. Use what you can get your hands on. It’s a maleable quick recipe this one, and the best part of it all is that it can be made with just a chopping board and a rapidly boiling pot of water.
Give it a try, add your own twist and let us know how you get on.
You will need
250g Whole-wheat spiral pasta
500g long-stemmed broccoli
1 fresh red chilli, finely sliced (optional to taste)
2 big handfuls baby spinach (±100g)
½ jar Pesto Princess Rocket Pesto
Freshly grated hard cheese like Parmesan or Gruyere
A generous dollop of crème fraîche
Rocket to serve
1. Get a large pot of water to boil, rapidly. Add a teaspoon or two of salt (heavily salted water keeps pasta from sticking) and pop in your pasta. Stir once or twice to make sure it doesn’t stick. Cook for eight minutes.
2. After eight minutes, drop your broccoli into the pasta pot and let it cook for one minute. Strain the pasta and broccoli but reserve a little of the pasta water – about ½ cup.
3. Immediately add the baby spinach, Pesto Princess Rocket Pesto and fresh chilli (if using) and stir through – pop the lid back on and let it sit for a minute or two so the spinach can wilt and all the flavours can mingle. Add a little of the pasta water if you would like more of a ‘sauce’.
4. Serve in deep bowls with a generous dollop of crème fraiche, rocket and freshly cracked black pepper.
Recipe and food styling by Michelle Parkin.
Michael Olivier’s Choice
Douglas Green Merlot Malbec 2015
Perhaps not best known as a Bordeaux grape, Malbec has been a great success in Argentina. Merlot is a natural blending partner. Delicious as a glass on its own but do chill for about 30 minutes before serving.
It looks like: Bottled in a Bordeaux shaped bottle with the enchanting ‘1940s’ cartoon of a man loading grapes onto a bakkie. In the glass, it is a gem bright ruby crimson at the core and cherry garnet at the rim.
It smells like: A bowl of crushed mulberries, roadside brambles and fresh sliced satsuma plum.
It tastes like: Fruit bomb. Full fat sappy berries, cherries and plums with a supporting undertow of the oak. Nice feel in the mouth. Silky juice-making aftertaste.