Katie's Pasta Tritato with Fettucini

Katie's Pasta Tritato with Fettucini
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This is a recipe I posted on the blog a few years ago. It's one which I came up with one Sunday afternoon about 5 years ago when I lived in Melbourne and when, after a late Saturday night party, I was too hungover and exhausted to go to the shops to buy anything for dinner, so I went through my fridge to find out what I could come up with using ingredients lurking at the back of the fridge.

The initial recipe called for a tub of shop-bought basil pesto-style dip. Obviously (and I have seriously learnt this the hard way with one particular recipe in my book) the idea of incorporating shop-bought, manufactured sauces and such in recipes is a total no-no as not everyone can get their hands on the same item I originally might have used in a recipe. Also I prefer not to use commercially made sauces etc. opting to make them from scratch myself. This is my revised version of my original 'Pasta Tritato' ~ named originally by my father-in-law Bob, who explained to me 'Tritato' in Italian means 'finely chopped or diced/minced' and seeing most of the ingredients in this recipe are indeed, finely chopped, Pasta Tritato seemed only fitting.

Again as the other recipes in this post, feel free to use shop-bought, fresh or dried fettucini if you prefer.

INGREDIENTS /

175g free range bacon, excess fat removed, lean meat very finely chopped
Light olive oil for cooking
3 plump garlic gloves, peeled + minced
100g brown onion, peeled + very finely chopped
130g red capsicum (bell pepper), deseeded + very finely chopped
180g button or Swiss brown mushrooms, cleaned + very finely chopped
12g long red chilli, de-seeded + very finely chopped
Dried chilli flakes (optional)
55g fresh basil, torn
30g pine nuts, toasted
Zest + juice half a lemon
Pinch caster/superfine sugar
30g Parmesan cheese, grated
Salt + freshly ground black pepper
Extra Parmesan cheese, grated

FETTUCINI

5 free-range medium-sized eggs
500g pasta 00 flour
Splash olive oil

METHOD /

Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large non-stick frying pan. Add the bacon and fry over medium heat for 4-5 minutes until golden brown and crispy. Drain on paper towel.

Add onion and garlic to the pan and cook for 3-4 minutes stirring often, until lightly browned. Add the capsicum frying for another 4 minutes, then add in the mushrooms, bacon and long red chilli, cook everything together for a further 5-6 minutes until mushrooms are cooked through and everything is slightly caramelised. Season to taste with a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper then see if it's spicy enough for your tastes, if not add a pinch or two of dried chilli flakes. I like this dish to have a bit of a kick to it, so normally always add in a good pinch of dried chilli.

Add the torn basil, toasted pine nuts, lemon zest and juice, sugar and a handful of parmesan cheese to the pan containing the bacon and veg., combine and keep warm.

To make the fettucini, sift flour into a large mixing bowl, make a well in the center into which you add 4 full eggs, 1 egg yolk and the splash of olive oil. Using clean hands, combine the flour and eggs, incorporating the flour into the eggs and oil. Do this until you have a dough. Turn out onto a clean and floured surface and knead for 10-12 minutes until you achieve a silky dough. Wrap in cling film and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes. Note: you can make the pasta in a food processor if you prefer.

Using a pasta maker, roll out the pasta dough in batches starting from the thickest setting and finishing on the second thinnest. Be careful not to make the pasta too thin. If you are using a Kitchen Aid roller attachment, setting 5 or 6 will produce the best results for fettucini, if you’re using a hand-roller, the 2nd last setting will normally be fine. Run the pasta sheets through the fettucini cutter then toss fettucini in flour and allow to rest on a flour-lined baking sheet, make sure to flour pasta well to avoid strips sticking together. Allow to dry for 20 minutes.

Bring a pot of water to a rolling boil over high heat, add a good pinch of salt and a glug of olive oil. Cook the fettucini until al denté ~ this will de dependent on the thickness of your pasta, I find mine normally cooks in 4-5 minutes. Check it after 3 to see how it is progressing.

When fettucini is cooked, using tongs add it straight into the pan along with a 2-3 tablespoons of the pasta water. Toss everything together and serve with extra grated Parmesan.