Tuesday, 8 November 2011


My summer holiday this year saw me on the Amalfi coast, in the midst of copious amounts of pizza, pasta, ice-cream and limoncello. Not the right season to be writing this, is it? But it’s not until now that I finally pulled out some dried pasta which I bought while there – candele. Beautiful no?

250 g candele pasta
200g chicken breast
1 carrot
1 onion
200ml red wine
1 tablespoon sugar

Finely slice half the carrot and onion into matchsticks, toss in olive oil and bake at 120 degrees C until crispy.
Finely chop the rest of the vegetables and brown them with the chicken breast and some mixed herbs. Add 50ml of the red wine and water to cover the chicken breast. Continue to cook until the meat is cooked. Finely slice the chicken and puree the vegetables to make a sauce.
While cooking the candele pasta, make a red wine reduction with the rest of the red wine and the sugar.
Stir the vegetable purée and chicken into the pasta and turn it onto the serving plates. Sprinkle with the red wine reduction, olive oil, dried vegetables and a tiny amount of grated parmeggiano.

Firstly I have to say, the texture of this pasta was unlike any other store-bought dried pasta I’ve ever cooked or tasted. Dried, the pasta was very thick, so it took a long time to cook. (I was heartbroken to have to halve them to get the whole length to cook.) And once it was cooked the pasta was perfectly al dente – a quasi-impossible feat with supermarket pasta.

As for the sauce – such an elaborate recipe considering it’s just some pasta, but it’s really good and unusual!