Thursday, 6 August 2015

I Did It My Way

Tortellini alla Francesco- un po Arrabbiati!
Tortellini alla Francesco- a tad Spicy!


This is the dish that my nieces love me to prepare for them... That my sisters also enjoy... That my parents even approve of... That even my brothers tried and enjoyed just recently and that all of my friends associate me with... It's the dish that I teach everyone to make whot thinks they cannot cook and who are a little afraid to try.

Yep... It has been a hands down 100% success story... So far! Don't let me down... I am hoping you will all try it and love it too!


As with most all of my dishes, this is economical, easy, quick and healthy and perfect for either a singleton like myself, or the whole family... Or even more!

It's a no-fail cooking method that is guaranteed to be packed with flavor and freshness... And best of all... We are talking 15 minutes cooking time here! And I know you all like that!


This is a dish that is suited to "fresh" tortellini, or actually any other "fresh" pasta. I write that in quotation marks, because I mean either pasta that has REALLY been made fresh, or even in this case, just your regular pasta in a bag from the supermarket... But not the dry kind. You'll see why in a few minutes.

So, to prepare 1 man-sized portion of pasta, or 2 restaurant-sized ones... Get ready for it... You will need: 1/3 of a carrot, 1 spring onion, a little fresh celery, a handful of cherry tomatoes, a little bacon or in this case, spicy salami (because it was just... there), some fresh parsley and basil and a little salt, pepper and olive oil.

And your tortellini of course! And if you want to prepare more... Do some math! It's not rocket science... Plus, looking at the pictures should be enough as it is only good common sense that you need... It really is super easy-peasy to make!

The result is super-tasty... And of course this is just the basic principle that I am going to share with you and once you have seen it, you can decide on: which filling for the pasta you prefer, whether you have hot and spicy, whether you use salami or bacon... Or even if you do without completely and make a vegetarian version! It will all be good!

Before you get down to making the quickest and tastiest noodle dish in the west... You are going to have to chop up all of those ingredients as finely as possible! Stop complaining and get chopping! Remember... The finer it's cut, the faster it cooks!


Begin by making a "soffritto" from the celery carrot and onion. I used just 1/3rd of the top of the celery stalk as it is really intense and fried the ingredients in nothing but the salamis own fat.


After 3-4 minutes, add the tortellini "raw" and stir-fry them for 2-3 minutes, so that they get nicely coated in the soffritto and the salami.

Add enough boiling water to cover the pasta halfway, then stir it through, put on the lid and simmer for 3-4 minutes.


After 3-4 minutes, add the chopped tomatoes and parsley, a little more salt, a touch of pepper, toss everything through and continue cooking for 3-4 minutes longer on a low simmer, so that all of that intense flavor can be infused and soaked-up into the pasta.

See the color of the broth that appears out of nowhere? That is all great, traditional flavor and it is your just-reward for doing all of that fine chopping!

By the time the tortellini are cooked through, all of the water will have evaporated away and after a last little drizzle of olive oil, will be ready for serving, piping-hot and delicious! And did I mention, easy? Well... I sure have now!


Add a hint of pepper or chili if you prefer, grate with a little Parmesan, Grana or salted ricotta... And enjoy!

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