I have always loved pasta. Spaghetti was the first dinner I made myself from scratch. The dish was something I had learned at school: spaghetti with minced beef in a sauce made of onions and tomato paste. Pasta is truly easy food. It is food kids can make. And do not care about making your own pasta – even Italians think it is ok to use dry pasta.
In this dish I serve pasta with typical Italian vegetables, tomatoes and zucchini, slow-roasted in the oven. If you haven’t tried zucchini I hope you will try them. Baking the vegetables on slow heat is a drying process that removes the water and intensifies the taste. Just think of the difference between natural tomatoes and sun-dried tomatoes.
I also add bacon and mushroom because these are two of my favourite ingredients, but you can easily skip the bacon for a veggie-option. If you are lactose intolerant, leave out the cream. This dish is still delicious thanks to the slow-roasted vegetables packed with flavours.
Pasta with slow-roasted vegetables (makes 3)
1 big zucchini, ends trimmed
200 g / 7 oz cherry tomatoes
400 g / 14 oz mushrooms e.g. brown button mushroom (aromasjampinjong)
300 ml / 10 oz sour cream (sæterrømme) or heavy cream (kremfløte)
200 g / 7 oz bacon, cut in small chunks (optional)
salt and pepper
4 tbsp olive oil
1. Wash the vegetables except the mushrooms. Line a wide baking tray with parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 150C/300F/Gas 2.
2. Cut the zucchini in thin slices and place on the baking tray along with the tomatoes. Add olive oil, salt and pepper and rub into the vegetables with your hands. Spread the vegetables evenly on the tray (so they get into touch with the tray, not each other). Roast in the oven for 1 hour. If the zucchini look dry, add some more oil.
3. The mushrooms should not be cut thinly, if they are small, cut them in two. If they are medium sized cut them in three. In a frying pan, place the mushrooms and bacon and fry for about 25 minutes on medium-low heat until the bacon is crisp and the mushrooms have a nice brown colour. Stir occasionally. Season with salt and pepper.
4. Meanwhile, boil your favorite pasta according to package instructions. When the bacon and mushrooms are done, remove half of them and place in the tray with the slow-roasted vegetables. Add sour cream (or heavy cream) to the pan and leave to boil until slightly thickened. Season once again.
5. Place the pasta in serving bowls, then add the creamy bacon and mushrooms. Finish with the slow-roasted vegetables, lots of parmesan and a scattering of parsley. Drizzle with olive or chili oil.
Music: Summertime Sadness by Lana Del Rey