This is another Hubby recipe, and it came out beautifully, so I figured he could guest star on this post. I am also very grateful as he made it just after I finished a night shift when I had zero desire, energy or brain power to cook. I would have thrown something from the freezer in the oven, and instead, for the small price of occupying Little Bit for a while before dinner (a delight rather than a chore), he dished up a beautiful, original meal. So here it is. I hope you enjoy and appreciate it as much as I did!
3 c tomato passata
3 tbsp olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped
1/2 head garlic, chopped
1/2 celeriac head, chopped
4-5 carrots, chopped
1 aubergine sliced thin
1 courgette sliced thin
1 tsp pul biber
1/2 tbsp oregano
juice and zest of 1 lemon
1 tbsp chives
500 g spaghetti
salt and pepper to taste
1) Heat 1 1/2 tbsp of the oil in a skillet and add the onion, carrot and celeriac and cook over medium low heat until it becomes sweet and tender. Brown a little at the end, caramelising the sugars that have been released.
2) Place remaining oil and the garlic in a second skillet and slowly bring up to medium heat, allowing the garlic to infuse the oil without browning. Add the strips of aubergine and cook until the aubergine is tender, about 5 minutes, then remove and place on paper towel to drain. Set aside.
3) Add the mix from the first skillet the the second and fry briefly in the garlic oil. Add the passata and zucchini. Simmer. Add a little water at this stage if the sauce is plopping and too thick.
4) Cook your spaghetti in salted water. Drain when slightly under done, reserving 1 - 11 1/2 c pasta water.
5) Once the zucchini is tender, add the oregano and pul biber. Add the aubergine back into the pan, add the juice and zest of one lemon and the shrimp. Cook for a further 5 minutes until the shrimp is white and firm but not over done.
6) Place cooked spaghetti and pasta water in the skillet and mix well with the sauce. Serve, sprinkling chives over the top.
This hit a good balance of flavours here, not too hot for Little Bit, a bit zesty, rich and moist. All around very satisfying! Little Bit loved it too, so what better endorsement could you ask? Although he does smoosh yogurt into main courses and then knead banana through it all, so perhaps take my word over his after all...