Butternut Anchovy And Walnut Pasta

Butternut Anchovy And Walnut Pasta

This butternut anchovy and walnut pasta is such a tasty dish. 

If you use either wholegrain spelt pasta, whole wheat pasta, or pasta made from brown rice or pulses, then it’s even tastier and healthier.  

I use gluten-free pasta made from brown rice or wholegrain spelt pasta when cooking at home. Both are much healthier than plain white spaghetti and also better for you weight. I also love pasta made from pulses – which I usually find in health food stores.

Anchovies are like all oily fish rich in omega-3 healthy fats. They are also a good source of several vitamins and minerals – they are a very good source of vitamin B3 and the mineral selenium.

Be aware though that as most anchovies are cured, they have a high salt content. I use them instead of salt every time I add them to a recipe. 

If you are a vegetarian, then simply leave out the anchovy fillets and add a bit of salt in its place.

Tomatoes are healthier when cooked as cooking increases the concentration of lycopene, a super-nutrient, in tomatoes.

Adding antioxidant-rich and highly nutritious walnuts and garlic makes this butternut anchovy and walnut pasta an even healthier dish.

Serve the pasta with a dark green side salad to make it even more nutritious.

For 4 people:

  • 1 small butternut squash, peeled, deseeded and diced
  • Olive oil
  • A large handful of walnuts, roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 anchovy fillets, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 250g (9oz) ripe small tomatoes (like cherry or plum tomatoes), halved
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • Black pepper

Parmesan shavings (use a potato peeler to make the shavings)

A handful of parsley, leaves only, roughly chopped

Spaghetti of your choice

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 220C/Fan 200C/425F/gas mark 7. Place the diced butternut squash in a roasting pan, drizzle over a bit of olive oil, season with a pinch of salt and more generously with black pepper and toss everything together. Place the roasting tin in the oven for about 25 minutes – stir midway through – until the diced butternut is tender.
  2. Put a large pan of salted water on to boil. Place the walnut pieces in a non-stick frying pan over a medium high heat and dry-fry for 1-2 minutes, until they start to brown slightly and smell wonderful. Remove the walnut pieces from the frying pan and allow them to cool down.
  3. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil and the chopped anchovy fillets to the frying pan over a medium high heat. Keep stirring until the anchovy starts to break down. Add the crushed garlic and continue to cook for a further minute. Add the tomatoes, balsamic vinegar and season, quite generously, with black pepper. Don’t add any salt. Stir, lower the heat and simmer for about 5 minutes. Keep warm.
  4. Cook the spaghetti according to packet instructions and then drain. Return the pasta to the pan, add the diced butternut squash and the anchovy-tomato mix and gently toss together. Divide the pasta between four shallow bowls and top each plate with some walnut pieces, chopped parsley and parmesan shavings.
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