Pasta = the ultimate comfort food. Do we ever need a reason to indulge? Even more so for those weekends when you want to kick back at home on the couch with dinner on your lap. That’s where pasta – which is super easy to whip up – comes in. We asked leading pasta brand Barilla for six recipes that are tasty, easy-to-make, and of course, social media friendly. (Because if you didn’t Instagram it, did you actually cook it?)

 

via GIPHY

 

Spaghetti with Spicy Lady’s Fingers and Basilico Sauce


Image: Barilla

Serves 2
Cooking time: 10-15 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 120g lady’s fingers
  • 60g spring onions
  • 60ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 2 fresh small chillies, chopped
  • 140g spaghetti
  • 100g Barilla Basilico sauce
  • Basil leaves, to garnish (optional)

Method:

  1. Sauté the chopped spring onions with a little oil until soft, and remove from pan.
  2. Add the chopped garlic and chilli to the same pan, and slow fry until fragrant.
  3. Add the lady’s fingers and fry for a couple of minutes, before adding the Basilico sauce.
  4. In the meantime, cook the pasta in salted water. When ready, toss with the sauce in the pan and serve with spring onions and fresh basil.

 

Risoni Risotto with Chicken and Broccoli


Image: Barilla

Serves 4
Cooking time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 200g risoni
  • 1 jar of green pesto
  • ¼ onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 small broccoli, florets only, sliced
  • 50g bacon or turkey bacon, thinly sliced
  • 2 chicken thighs, boned and 1 cm diced
  • 1.5 litre chicken stock
  • 50g unsalted butter
  • 50g parmesan, grated
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

Method:

  1. Bring the chicken stock to a boil. Meanwhile, heat the oil and onions in a large frying pan. Cook till golden.
  2. Add the bacon and chicken, and cook for further 2 minutes.
  3. Add the risoni and stir. Add a full ladle of boiling stock and the broccoli and stir again.
  4. Keep adding stock as it is absorbed by the pasta. It should take 10 to 12 minutes for the risoni to be ready.
  5. When the texture of the risoni is creamy, remove from the heat. Add the butter and parmesan and stir well to combine. Allow to rest for a couple of minutes before serving.

 

Tagliatelle with Fresh Sardines and Fennel

Image: Barilla

Serves 4
Cooking time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 250g tagliatelle
  • 200g, fresh sardines, heads off, deboned, cut into small chunks
  • 150g fennel
  • 4 anchovy fillets in olive oil, finely chopped
  • 30g sultanas
  • 40g pine nuts
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 sachet of saffron (use approx. 20-25 strands)
  • ½ onion, finely chopped
  • Extra virgin olive oil

Method:

  1. Soak the sultanas in warm water for 15 minutes until plump, then squeeze the water out and set aside.
  2. Blanch the fennel and chop it finely.
  3. In a large frying pan, brown the chopped onion and garlic in a little olive oil; add the anchovy fillets and the sardines and cook for 3 to 4 minutes. Stir well.
  4. Add the fennel, sultanas, pine nuts, and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Infuse the saffron with a small amount of warm water (just enough to cover the strands) and add to the pan. Cook for a couple of minutes so the saffron is incorporated, and turn off the heat and set aside.
  6. In the meantime, cook the tagliatelle in salted boiling water.  When cooked al dente, toss in the pan with the sauce and serve.

 

Stir Fried Spaghetti* with Chicken


Image: Barilla

Serves 4
Cooking time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 400g spaghetti
  • 200g chicken thigh, deboned and deskinned, cut in 2cm chunks
  • 300g bean sprouts
  • 2 tbsp garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp ginger, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp corn flour
  • 4 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 4 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • 3-4 green onions, chopped into 1cm piece (green stem only)
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • Olive oil

Method:

  1. In a small bowl, combine the chicken, corn flour, and 2 tbsp each of light and dark soy sauce. Set aside to marinade for as long as the pasta takes to cook.
  2. In the meantime, cook the spaghetti in salted boiling water.
  3. Drain the pasta 1 minute before the suggested cooking time on the packet and stir fry in a little olive oil, seasoning with the remaining 2 tbsp of light and dark soy. Take the pasta out of the pan and set aside.
  4. In the same pan, quickly stir fry the chicken with a little olive oil, garlic and ginger for 2 minutes.
  5. Add the pasta and stir fry everything together for another minute. Finish with a drizzle of sesame oil and sprinkle with the chopped green onion.

*You can also use linguine or spaghettoni

 

Green Curry Linguine*


Image: Barilla

Serves 4
Cooking time: 25 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 400g linguine
  • 100g green curry paste
  • 12 prawns, shelled and deveined
  • 2 small eggplants, cut in small cubes
  • 250ml coconut cream
  • 2 tbsp sugar (preferably palm or brown sugar)
  • Fish sauce, to taste
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Kaffir lime leaves, cut into thin strips (optional)

Method:

  1. In a large frying pan, cook the green curry paste in a little extra virgin olive oil and 2 spoonfuls of coconut cream until it starts smelling fragrant and oil starts to surface in the mixture.
  2. Add the eggplant and cook for 3 minutes, before adding the prawns and cook until they turn red.
  3. Add the coconut cream and season with sugar and fish sauce to taste. Mix well and simmer.
  4. In the meantime, cook the linguine in salted boiling water.
  5. Drain the pasta and toss in the pan with the sauce. Serve with thinly sliced kaffir lime leaves.

*You can also use spaghetti or spaghettoni

 

Conchiglie with Spicy Tomato and Bacon Sauce


Image: Barilla

Serves 4
Cooking time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 400g conchiglie
  • 1 jar of Barilla Basilico sauce
  • 100g bacon, cut into strips
  • 1 handful of parmesan cheese, grated
  • 2 small dry chillies, finely chopped
  • 1 handful of parsley, chopped
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

Method:

  1. In a large frying pan, cook the bacon with a little olive oil on low heat.
  2. Add the chopped chillies and parsley, then pour in the Basilico sauce and bring to a simmer. Turn off the heat and set aside.
  3. In the meantime, cook the conchiglie in salted boiling water.
  4. Drain the pasta when cooked and toss in the pan with the sauce and a little of the pasta cooking water. Finish by sprinkling parmesan cheese on top of the pasta and serve.