Wild Rocket & Pecorino Orecchiette
With lemons, fresh tomatoes, wild rocket and anchovies that smell like the sea, this is a classic recipe from my hometown of Minori. You can exchange the orecchiette for other short pasta shapes, if you like.
|2 cloves||of garlic, peeled|
|2 sticks||of celery, trimmed|
|½||a fresh red chilli|
|8||spring onions, trimmed|
|2||large firm tomatoes|
|Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper|
|Extra virgin olive oil|
|Juice from ½ a lemon|
|100g||wild rocket, washed|
|Pecorino cheese, to serve|
Start by preparing your ingredients. Finely slice the garlic, celery, chilli and spring onions. Quarter the tomatoes and cut out the seeds, then dice the flesh.
Cook the orecchiette in a large pan of boiling salted water until al dente. Meanwhile, heat 5 tablespoons of oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Add the garlic, celery and whole anchovies and fry for 30 seconds, then stir in the chilli and spring onions. Sweat for a few minutes, or until just starting to soften - you want to keep the sauce quite raw so the onions retain their fresh flavour.
Reserving some of the cooking water, drain the orecchiette and add to the sauce. Toss well over the heat until lovely and glossy, adding a splash of the cooking water to loosen, if needed. Season carefully with salt, add the lemon juice, then remove from the heat. Toss in the tomatoes and rocket, then serve with shavings of pecorino, a drizzle of oil and a twist of pepper, if you like.