Monday, 26 September 2011

Hunt the vegetable pasta sauce

It's worth remembering that in times of need, when you have forgotten to get what you had planned for supper out of the freezer, that there is much that can be done with a can of chopped tomatoes and some pasta.

I was lucky today - not only did I have the can of chopped tomatoes, and pasta, available, I also had garlic, a courgette (they're still coming), celery, some tired carrots that didn't make it into yesterday's soup and - the big highlight - some left over creme fraiche. No onions, but we can live without them. Fried the courgette and garlic in some olive oil, grated in the carrot and finely chopped the celery and added that. After a few minutes to soften the veg (not that it needed much softening), chuck in the can of tomatoes, rinsed out with about 1/4 can of water added to the pan and simmer while the pasta is cooking. Once it was all cooked, I added some basil leaves (it's trying deparately to bolt, but I keep pulling it back from the brink), and a dollop of creme fraiche, and whizzed it all up with a handheld 'stick' blender.

Kids get a good portion of their 5 a day without realising it - or so I thought. "What's this?" Blue asked, holding up an un-whizzed chunk on his fork, alarmingly close to my face. "Um, courgette" I ventured "but you like courgette" - always go for affirmation where possible - I find I sometimes manage to convince them. Pink joined in - "You mean there is courgette in this and I didn't even notice?" She looked horrified. "And didn't you enjoy it?" I asked with a song in my voice and an undertone of menace. Obviously today was not a day that she was going to be combative. "It was yum-ee" she said.

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