Tomato, Anchovy and Pepper Pasta with Parsley

Italy. That sacred land of food. Something about the idea of eating in Italy really does captivate, doesn’t it? I’ve never met anyone who doesn’t like Italian food, and I hope I never do. It’s the Tom Hanks of the food world: universally loved.

It’s no surprise, really. Italian food is so delicious, so fulfilling, yet not intimidating to try making yourself. I’ve spent weeks at a time surviving on pasta, and it never felt like a chore. On top of being perfect as day-to-day sustenance, it’s also built to impress. Roast a beautiful pork belly, porchetta style, or make your own gnocchi in sage brown butter, and anyone will be putty in your hands.

I may never have been to Italy, but I think there are few things in the world that can be as simultaneously comforting and sexy as a bowl of Spaghetti Carbonara, or as warm and welcoming as a bubbling pot of Lamb Ragu.

This simple recipe is perfect for hot summer days – and nights (all the time in Singapore). It’s almost part-salad, part-pasta. I like using plenty of tomatoes, and only cooking them slightly, so they still retain their freshness. With a base of anchovies and peppers, and finished with lots of parsley, chopped almonds and parmesan cheese, this makes an amazing companion to a glass of chilled white wine.

Tomato, Anchovy and Pepper Pasta with Parsley

Serves 2

200g cherry tomatoes, halved

1 red bell pepper, sliced into short strips

1-2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

4-5 anchovies in olive oil

A generous bunch of parsley, leaves torn off and roughly chopped

A handful of almonds, roughly chopped

Parmesan cheese and Extra Virgin Olive Oil, to finish

Enough spaghetti (I used wholemeal here) for two - around 120g

Boil the spaghetti, or whatever pasta you prefer, in plenty of salted boiling water.

Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil up in a sauté pan over a medium. Add the anchovies and garlic, and stir to dissolve the anchovies.

Add the bell pepper slices to the pan and stir to cook. You want the bell pepper to soften slightly, but still retain a bite. This usually takes about 5 minutes.

Toss in the halved cherry tomatoes and cook until they just start to wilt and are warmed through. Drain your pasta and mix through with the sauce. Throw in the parsley and give it a quick stir.

Serve your pasta with chopped almonds and grated parmesan cheese, as well as a lovely drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Enjoy!

This recipe first appeared on Page Five, as part of Kitchenhoarder's ongoing collaboration with luxury vintage haven The Fifth Collection.