Linguine with saffron, roasted garlic, herb butter and hazelnuts
NUTRITION: PER SERVING
FAT: 42.2G (19.6G SATURATED)
CARBOHYDRATES: 75.4G (3.9G SUGARS)
1 garlic bulb
Drizzle extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for frying
Handful blanched hazelnuts
60g unsalted butter
Pinch saffron threads, soaked in 1 tbsp hot water for 10 minutes
Juice ½-1 lemon
250g fresh linguine (or whichever fresh long pasta you can buy)
100g fresh basil, leaves finely chopped
20g fresh dill, leaves finely chopped
25g bunch fresh chives, snipped
Pecorino cheese (or vegetarian alternative) for grating
Heat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan/gas 6. Rub the garlic bulb with oil and wrap in foil, then roast for 40 minutes or until completely soft. Scatter the hazelnuts over a baking tray and toast in the oven for the last 6-8 minutes of the garlic cooking time. Remove both and set aside to cool. When the garlic is cool enough to handle, squeeze out the soft flesh from each clove into a small bowl. It looks like a lot of garlic for two people, but it’s a mellow flavour. Roughly chop the hazelnuts.
Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a frying pan with a glug of oil then, once melted, add the garlic and the saffron in its soaking water. Stir, then cook over a very low heat to allow the flavours to infuse. Turn the heat up to brown the butter ever so slightly, then remove from the heat and squeeze in the juice of half the lemon.
Cook the pasta in the boiling water for 2-3 minutes until al dente (with bite), then use tongs to transfer it to the butter pan – you want to bring a little of the cooking water with the pasta, so don’t drain in a colander. Put the frying pan back over a gentle heat and stir to coat the pasta in the butter. Add the herbs and season generously with salt and pepper, then taste and add the rest of the lemon juice if you want to. Divide between 2 bowls, scatter with the hazelnuts and serve sprinkled with grated pecorino.
Prepare the garlic and hazelnuts to the end of step 1 up to 12 hours in advance; keep the garlic covered in the fridge and keep the hazelnuts covered somewhere cool.