Beautifully tender seasonal rainbow cauliflower accompanied by a delightful ricotta dill sauce with a dash of Lemon. All incorporated within Al dented shell pasta. A definite seasonal treat that brings the sun back into the autumn months and a new appreciation for the freshest of ingredients.
Preparation time: 10 minutes Cooking Time: 15 minutes For: 2 Portions
For the ricotta dill sauce
- 250 g Ricotta
- Approx. 4 Tbsp. olive oil
- 14 cracks of black pepper
- 2 Tbsp. finely chopped dill
- Approx. 100 ml boiling water
- Salt to taste
For the Pasta
- 500 g Rainbow Cauliflower
- Approx. 300 g Shell pasta (Enough for two people)
- 2 Tsp. butter, 2 Tsp Olive oil
- Juice of one small lemon
- Dash of olive oil
- Enough hot water to create a creamy sauce (50 ml increments)
- 2 Tsp. grated Parmesan to garnish
- Torn dill to garnish
Tips and Tricks: Getting the rainbow cauliflower can be difficult out of its season (Usually October – November), so don’t worry if you can only get white cauliflower, it will taste just as good. Getting good quality ricotta makes the world of difference to this dish, try your local cheese market to see what types they have got in, get to know them and you’ll most likely learn something that you never thought you would :).
- Mix all the ingredients together in order to make the ricotta dill sauce, set aside for later.
- Begin cooking the shell pasta in salted boiling water to Al Dente. (2 minutes less than packet instructions)
- On a medium heat fry the cauliflower florets for 2 minutes in a mixture of the oil and butter, leaving to fry for a couple of seconds per side to gain colour.
- Once the florets are nicely coloured Squeeze 1/2 of the lemon juice over the cauliflower and pour Approx. 5 ladles of the pasta water into the pan (Amount depends on size of pan).
- Place on a lid and steam on a high heat until the florets are cooked but still firm (Approx. 3 minutes).
- Once the pasta is cooked add to the cauliflower and stir (If more than 2 Tbsp water remains in the pan, drain prior to adding the pasta).
- Reduce the heat to low and stir in the ricotta dill sauce, season with the rest of the lemon juice and a dash of olive oil, if necessary add hot water bit by bit until a creamy sauce is made (50 ml increments will do it).
- Place into a bowl and finish with grated Parmesan and torn dill
Tips and Tricks: As is the case with most pasta sauces then the trick is in its consistency, it has to be thick enough to stick to the pasta shells but not so dry that it is powdery in your mouth, if it is too wet then reduce it until the thickness required is reached. Having a firmness to the pasta and the cauliflower is quite important to make this dish beautiful, I always found the best way to confirm this was simply to taste them during cooking, then you’ll defiantly know how long more they need.