Squid Ink Pasta with Rich Tomato and Prawn Sauce
We spent Thursday night in Daunt Books in Holland Park for the book launch of “The Last Wild” by a childhood friend, Piers Torday. It is next on my list to read and comes highly recommended for anyone 9 years old or over!
Whilst in Holland Park with its splendora of delicous shops and restaurants (GelatoMio’s ice-cream is worth a trip alone – also in Chiswick or St Johns Wood) and inaccessibly expensive estate agents, I indulged in buying some fine black pasta from a deli. With it I made a rich sweet and spicy tomato sauce with King Prawns. This sauce would be delicious with any pasta, but if you manage to find (or even make??) some with squid ink, it will be extra special.
Pasta – I hold a £2 coin size when bunched together
125mls extra virgin olive oil
4 cloves of garlic finely chopped
1/2 tsp chilli flakes
Maldon Sea Salt or similar
125mls dry white wine or dry sherry
1 tin tomatoes
8-10 King Prawns
Fresh Coriander Leaves
1. Heat the oil in a pan until hot but not too hot, and add the finely chopped garlic and let it sizzle for about 30 seconds until it is lightly golden brown.
2. Add the chilli flakes for 10-20 seconds
3. Add the wine and tomatoes and let it bubble until you have a thick sticky sauce. To achieve this, stir it now and then to stop it sticking to the bottom of the pan or burning. This will take about half an hour, depending on the strength of the heat. It really does need to be sticky which takes time. Add more olive oil to loosen the texture if it needs longer.
4. Boil the pasta until al dente, and while it is boiling, add the prawns to the tomato sauce and heat through until pink. If you are using already cooked prawns, then add them to the sauce at the last minute, just to heat through.
5. Serve with some chopped coriander and some chilli oil on the side if liked, though if using squid ink pasta, be careful not to take away from its flavour with too much of a chilli kick.