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Bucatini with asparagus, anchovies and capers
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So often the simplest dishes are the best – here asparagus elevates everyday pasta into something rather sublime. If you’re vegetarian, just leave out the anchovies and perhaps add a little grated cheese
130g fresh sourdough, crusts removed
450g asparagus, trimmed
125ml extra virgin olive oil
3 tbsp nonpareille capers, rinsed and drained
350g Waitrose 1 bucatini spaghetti
1 large garlic clove, roughly chopped
1 large lemon, zest and juice
¼ tsp dried chilli flakes
10 anchovy fillets in olive oil, drained
½ x 25g pack flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped
1. Roughly tear up the sourdough and put in the small bowl of a food processor. Whizz to breadcrumbs and set aside. Slice each asparagus spear on a steep diagonal into pieces about 3-4cm long; set aside.
2. Heat 2 tbsp oil in a frying pan. Pat the capers dry; add to the pan. Cook over a medium heat for 2-4 minutes, turning occasionally, until starting to crisp. Scoop out with a slotted spoon; drain on kitchen paper, leaving the oil in the pan. Add the breadcrumbs to the pan and stir over the heat until golden brown (4-6 minutes); set aside to cool and crisp up.
3. Meanwhile, cook the pasta following pack instructions, adding the asparagus pieces for the final 3 minutes. Put the garlic in a pestle and mortar with the lemon zest, chilli and anchovies. Pound into a smooth paste, then stir in the lemon juice and remaining oil. Drain the pasta and return to the pan. Toss with the anchovy paste, capers and parsley; season if liked. Divide between bowls, scattering with the breadcrumbs to serve.
This recipe first appeared in Waitrose & Partners Food, June 2019 issue. Download the Waitrose & Partners Food app for the full issue
Typical values per serving:
This recipe was first published in May 2019.