Harissa and Kale Spaghetti

How did this happen? Not but a fortnight ago I was planning a new regime of salad eating. Carbs were out, leafy lean greens were in. Yet somehow I started the week with this. Green yes, leafy no. And then there was the night I awoke dreaming of possible variations on mac and cheese! Which may or may not have been the same night I ate this and this. And then there was an encounter with a peanut butter pie (recipe to come). A salad regime it has not been.

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So I figured why fight it? Why not just continue this worship at the carb alter? Seeing as so many of you enjoyed my Avocado Pesto Spaghetti I thought I ought to share with you another of my favourite – yet unusual – spaghetti recipes. One that simply rocks my boat right out of the water.

Now you may not have dreamt of pairing your pasta with harissa but once you’ve tried it, you’ll dream of it often. And with this being a practically no-cook sauce there’s nothing stoping you making it often too.

My hat goes off to Heidi of 101 Cookbooks for the original recipe. She is simply awe inspiring in the kitchen.

What you’ll need (serves 4)
3 cloves of garlic crushed
1 pinch of good quality sea salt
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 heaped tablespoons of harissa paste

200 gms whole wheat spaghetti
1 smallish bunch of kale, washed, deveined and chopped into medium-large pieces
1/3 cup pine nuts
1/2 cup oven roasted black olives, pitts removed (Sandhurst brand)
Rind of one lemon
Crumbled fetta (optional)

kale_gobbled_gulped

Harissa spaghetti_gobbled_gulpedSo a few notes: If you can find it I recommend Reuben Solomons Harissa Paste. It will put you back about $12 a jar but its a worthy investment, in all honesty I’m mildly addicted to the stuff (I get mine at Harris Farm). Again if you can find them them, oven dried olives do amazing things to this dish otherwise try for oil cured black olives, but frankly any olives will do. And while I know it’s not universally popular the whole wheat pasta really brings this dish together so even if it’s not usually your bag give it a whirl and a twirl.

Harissa Paste

First, put on a pot of boiling water.

While your water comes to the boil, combine your garlic, salt, oil and harissa together and mix well. Set aside.

Harissa Paste_gobbled_gulped

When your pasta is seconds from being ready put the kale in with the water, count to 10 and then drain.

Return the empty pot to the heat and add half the harissa mix. As it starts to sizzle add the drained pasta and kale along with the olives and pine nuts. Mix through and remove from the heat.

Transfer your pasta to a serving dish, drizzle over the remaining harissa mix and finish off with finely grated lemon rind. Top with crumbled feta if using.

And there you have it a vegetarian friendly pasta where every mouthful packs a punch. Go on, give it a try.

Harissa spaghetti_gobbled_gulped_3

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