A few years ago I attended a cooking class about cooking with spices. One of the things we made was pitta breads which we ate by dipping in oil and then dipping the oil covered pieces of bread into little bowls of dukkah which then stuck to the pitta bread. It was the first time I had heard of and tasted dukkah and I loved it.
After that class I wanted to use dukkah at home. As you couldn’t find it in the supermarket then, it meant I would have to make it myself. At the time I didn’t have any children so I had much more time for making things completely from scratch. I had good intentions and planned to make my own but somehow or other it got forgotten about.
Fast forward a few years and I still love to make things from scratch but I tend to opt for things that are quick and will definitely take the shortcut of buying a ready-made spice mix if it’s going to help me make something tasty. After all, the alternative is probably to not make that tasty dish at all. Luckily, it is now possible to find dukkah in some supermarkets so even if you can’t motivate yourself to research and make it yourself, you can still try this lovely pasta dish.
I found the recipe for the olive and dukkah pasta on the blog, Rachel Cotterill, which I was assigned to for this month’s Secret Recipe Club challenge. Rachel is one of those people who seems to do everything: blogging, cooking, travelling, writing books, archery, even coppicing … and that’s not all. As someone who can’t even find time to make her own dukkah, I was impressed! Her blog is packed full of mainly healthy vegetarian recipes, and many of them, like this pasta dish, are vegan. Some of the recipes I was really tempted by were Armenian Spinach Puffs and Cheese and Onion Cookies.
The dukkah with the pasta is an unusual combination but it’s really tasty. Normally I can’t resist topping my pasta with lots of cheese but it wouldn’t go with the dukkah so you end up with a much lighter and healthier dish too. Well, now that I think about it, some crumbled feta or a similar cheese probably would be quite nice but I didn’t think about it at the time and didn’t miss the lack of cheese either. I stuck fairly closely to the original recipe but used a green instead of red pepper and also added some garlic.
Ingredients – Serves 2
1 green pepper
15 (approx) baby plum tomatoes
1 garlic clove
2 tbsp tomato puree
2 tbsp dukkah
How to Make Olive and Dukkah Pasta
1. Put the pasta on to boil.
2. In another large pan heat the oil and then add the green pepper. Keep giving it a stir. Add the tomatoes and garlic and cook for another minute. Don’t cook for too long or the tomatoes will break down too much and it’s nice for them to keep their shape.
3. When the pasta is ready add it to the pan with the tomatoes and peppers, along with just a little of the cooking water. Add the tomato puree, olives and dukkah and stir till it is all heated through.
To see what other Secret Recipe Club participants have made, click on the link below: