Roast garlic and rocket pasta

Simple things poured over pasta. It feels like cheating, but nuts to it: Nigel Slater’s made a career out of it. Well, plus a shit-tonne of other stuff, and being actually talented, and writing quite well most of the time. But the point stands – dumping big flavours over boiled starch feels like lazy blogging, but I still like to share the permutations that work.

Pasta with roast garlic, rocket, peas, and crème fraiche

This is another of those “barely a recipe” posts where it’s mostly in the title, but you get a lot of flavour for really not much effort.

This isn’t disposably quick, but it’s a case of dead time rather than hassle.

IMG_9934Stick a couple of bulbs of garlic (one per person) into a medium oven to roast until rich and sweet. This usually takes about half an hour, somewhere north of 160c. Take them out, let them cool, slice through the tops and squeeze the bulbs out into a pan.

That’s the hard part. After that you just cook some pasta, add crème fraiche to the garlic, warm it through, and throw in a handful each of peas and rocket.

Let the bits all come up to a decent temperature, so the rocket wilts a little bit and the peas are hot if you’re using frozen. Then toss it through pasta when it’s done.

Pasta with roast garlic, rocket, peas, and crème fraiche

The brief heating and the dairy take some of the edge off the garlic, leaving it round and mellow. Oh, it’s still strong as balls – you’re eating a bulb each, after all. But with the slow roasting, and the freshness of the peas, this is delicate if not exactly subtle.

Not counting the roasting, it’s basically only a few minutes of actually doing anything, which makes this a promising rich lunch or simple supper.

2 thoughts on “Roast garlic and rocket pasta”

  1. After some recent rocket-based trauma, I ignored the rocket. I used ricotta instead of crème fraiche, but that did turn out too dry rather than saucy. Also half the garlic bulbs were smoked, mostly because I needed to use them up. That did work very well, but I hate squeezing roasted garlic out of the bulbs. It is a sticky faff. But the recipe is no effort otherwise, so I probably shouldn’t complain.

    There might have been some fresh thyme in there as well.

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