Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Attempt #23: Quick sausage meatballs with a tomato and basil sauce, spaghetti and sweet raw peas

Ok, this is indeed as quick as the recipe described. It is pretty much a very straight forward pasta – simple and quick to make. One of the key items that is good to have to make this pasta is that it helps if you have 3 stoves, 2 pans and 1 pot. If you are working with less than 2 pans and a pot, omit the meatballs. J

The result:

I bought Oxford Pork Sausages for this pasta. From the various types of sausages that I have tried for my Jamie Oliver’s cooking till now, this is the least of my favourite. Unlike Italian sausages, the Oxford Pork Sausages doesn’t seemed to have sufficient herbs mixture to make it as fragrant or tasty. Unlike the recipe, I omitted green peas as I am not a fan of them.
• olive oil
• 8 good-quality pork sausages
• 500g spaghetti
sea salt
• 300g fresh peas, in their pods
• a block of Parmesan cheese, to serve
• a few sprigs of fresh marjoram, thyme or rosemary, leave picked

for the tomato sauce
olive oil
• 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely sliced
• a small bunch of fresh basil, leaves picked, stalks finely chopped
• 2 x 400g tins of good-quality plum tomatoes
• sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
• good-quality balsamic vinegar
Heat a large saucepan and add a few glugs of olive oil. Snip the sausages apart, then squeeze and pinch the meat out of the skins so that you get little meatball shapes – don’t make them too big or they will take too long to cook. Try to get at least three balls out of each sausage. Don’t worry about rolling them into perfect balls and making them look all fancy – rough and rustic is good! Put them into your pan. Keep frying and turning the meatballs until they’re golden brown and cooked through.

Meanwhile, put the spaghetti into a large pan of salted boiling water and cook according to the packet instructions until al dente.

To make your tomato sauce, heat a separate pan and pour in some olive oil. Add the garlic and the chopped basil stalks and move them around the pan for a couple of minutes. Put some small basil leaves to one side for later, and sprinkle the rest into the pan. Add the tomatoes and season carefully to taste. Bring to a simmer, break up your tomatoes a bit more with a spoon and add a swig of balsamic vinegar – it’s lovely for adding sweetness to the sauce.

Add the herbs to the pan of sausage meatballs, tossing everything in all the lovely flavours. Cook for around 30 seconds. When your spaghetti is cooked, drain it and divide the pasta and meatballs between four bowls. Spoon over the tomato sauce. Sprinkle over the reserved basil leaves and serve with a handful of fresh peas per person in the middle of the table, so that everyone can have a go at podding their own, and a little Parmesan for grating and shaving over the top.
Jamie's rendition of the pasta:

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