Thursday, December 15, 2011

TV Dinners

I don't think I know how to cook for less than 6 people.
It's definitely due to the influence of my mother and her intense preoccupation with always needing leftovers and her, well, I'm just going to call it an obsession, with having a ridiculously well stocked pantry.
I always tell her she's like one of those crazy old women who is convinced that the grand apocalypse is coming and thinks we all need to stock up on non-perishables. Should the day come when we need to bunker down in our basements and hide from the flesh hungry aliens, I will be set with mini cans of baked beans for years.

I joke...

...But seriously, if you ever find yourself in a situation of mass world destruction, just pop on over to my place, we'll be sure to have enough for you, your extended family and wider social circle.


This meal is great for those wanting to make their dinners feed more from a modest pantry and it is so quick and easy to make. If you have this in your cooking repertoire you'll never have an excuse to eat a crappy cardboard box meal. Bread and pasta are those two basic staples that can be found in any household and together they make a mean combo  - just toast the breadcrumbs in a delicious garlicy olive oil, chuck in some pasta, some nice fresh parsley and lemon zest, lightly steamed cauliflower and, if you are feeling snazzy, some prawns.

Pangrattato Pasta with Prawns
Serves 4-6

6 slices of bread
1/2 a head of cauliflower, cut into small pieces
7 whole cloves of garlic, peeled
1 tablepoon of sea salt
Big handful of fresh parsley
1/2 a cup of olive oil
400g pasta
400g prawns, de-shelled and de-veined
Lemon zest
Chilli flakes (optional)

In a food processor whiz up the bread with the garlic cloves and salt until you have a chunky bread crumb consistency.

Pour the olive oil in a pan and turn on to a medium heat. Add the prawns and fry off for a few minutes. Place the breadcrumb mixture in the pan and stir to coat in oil. Keep stirring and checking on the breadcrumbs as you dont want it to burn.

Meanwhile get the pasta boiling. In the last few minutes of cooking the pasta, chuck the cauliflower into the pot to lightly boil. Drain and add to the pan with the breadcrumbs and pasta.

Just before serving add in the chopped parsley, and some grated lemon zest. Sprinkle on some chilli flakes if desired. Devour. 

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