I was a little apprehensive about this sauce as the combination of ingredients was a bit on the non-traditional side. It worked really well though, and it’s definitely one I’d recommend. Figs and almonds are both high in calcium, so hopefully this adds to general healthiness of the dish. It’s also incredibly quick to prepare.
Ingredients for fig, almond and spinach pasta (serves 2):
– 1 small packet of almonds (ideally chopped)
– 150g pasta (I found whole wheat worked quite well for this)
– Olive oil
– 1 small onion
– 1 large packet of spinach
– A generous handful of dried figs
– 1-2 small cartons of soya cream
– A little cinnamon or mixed spice
1. Preheat the oven to gas 6 (200 C), and bring a large saucepan of water to the boil (or boil it in the kettle for speed). Meanwhile, chop the onion and figs.
2. Spread the almonds out on a baking tray and roast for around 10 mins, checking regularly that they’re not getting too well done. When they’re ready, remove from the oven and set aside.
3. While the almonds are in the oven, add the pasta to the boiling water along with a splash of oil. Simmer for around 10-15 mins, until tender.
4. Meanwhile, heat a good splash of oil in a different pan and add the onion. Sautee until it’s soft and semi-transparent, stirring almost constantly.
5. Add a splash of water, then gradually add the spinach, a few handfuls at a time. Wait until each batch of spinach has started to wilt before adding the next one. It shrinks at an alarming rate and it won’t be long before you’ve added the whole packet.
6. Add the soya cream, figs and cinnamon/mixed spice (just a sprinkle of this though.) Continue to simmer for about another 5 mins, stirring very regularly.
7. When the pasta is ready, drain and add to the sauce (it’s worth doing it this way round as it helps you to avoid a dry dish if you’ve ended up with too much pasta and not enough sauce).
8. Serve the pasta and sprinkle the almonds over the top. I find that serving in a bowl really helps to keep the pasta nice and hot.