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November 19, 2016 at 6:24 am by Angela

Welcome to my montly recipe feature. Along with ‘Five Favourite Finds‘, ‘My Top 10 Online Reads‘ and ‘What Little H Did‘, each month I share a personal recipe with you all. Some of the recipes are completely of my own creation whilst some are variations of a recipe I’ve found somewhere. Where the recipe falls into the latter bucket, I’ll be sure to make reference to the original and make clear any changes I’ve made. The meal for this month is: Tomato and olive spaghetti. Here’s how I did it!


Tomato and olive spaghetti

Earlier this year, Sam and I were watching a bit of a Rick Stein cookery show where he was going round Italy. He went for lunch with an Italian family who made an amazing looking simple pasta sauce. It was quite a dry sauce with minimal ingredients. When mixed with the spaghetti, the sauce just stuck to the pasta. Sam asked me to try and recreate so this was my attempt. It’s completely my own recipe but inspired by the Rick Stein show; The technique of removing the juice from the tomatoes is the one thing I did remember from the show! I’ve made this a few times now and whilst this time I’ve made it with olives, it work well with just tomatoes or with pre-baked aubergine.


Key facts

  • Prep time: 10 mins
  • Cooking time: 12 mins
  • Family friendly*?: Yes
  • Complexity: Low
  • Cost: Low
  • Serves: 2 adults
  • Freezable: Yes but would be better fresh

*Refers to ingredients etc. Does not guarantee picky babies, toddlers or teens will actually eat it.


  • 1 small onion sliced into quarter moons as finely as possible
  • 300g cherry tomatoes
  • 1 clove of finely chopped garlic
  • 1 tsp dried basil or 1 handful of fresh basil chopped finely
  • 10 black pitted olives cut into quarters
  • 200g of spaghetti (or linguine)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • fresh parmesan
  • salt / pepper to season


  1. Chop the tomatoes into quarters then one handful at a time, squeeze out all of the seeds and juice to leave just the fleshy part. Set aside in a bowl;
  2. Boil a large pan full of lightly salted water and add the spaghetti. Leave to cook per instructions (but usually 10 – 12 mins);
  3. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan.
  4. Once the pan is hot, add the onion, stir and then turn the heat down to low;
  5. Cook the onion for 5 minutes (cooking it slowly makes it softer and sweeter);
  6. Turn the heat back up to medium then add the garlic and cook for a further 2 minutes;
  7. Add the tomatoes and basil, stirring into the onion and garlic;
  8. Leave the tomatoes cooking on medium heat for 5 minutes stirring occasionally. When stirring, use the back of the spoon to squash the tomatoes down and get out any extra liquid;
  9. With 2 minutes to go before the spaghetti is ready, add the olives into the tomato mixture to heat through;
  10. Try the sauce and season to taste / depending on whether little ‘uns are eating it;
  11. Drain the spaghetti and toss in the tomato sauce
  12. Serve with grated parmesan cheese!

How did it go down in Casa Watling?

So far I’ve only made this as an adult meal. But Sam is a massive fan and has enjoyed it on every occasion I’ve made it. He likes it because it’s such a fresh and uncomplicated meal. Little H is a big fan of tomato pasta so I will definitely try this for her at some point, but probably with an alternative toddler-friendly pasta…

The Pramshed

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Posted in Home Life
Tags: #FamilyFun, #fortheloveofBLOG, #KCACOLS, #MarvMondays, Aubergine, garlic, linguine, MealoftheMonth, olives, onion, parmesan, spaghetti, Tomatoes,
Some comments:
  1. This sounds an easy dish to make but I’d leave out the olives – they the one thing I really don’t like.

    • It’s definitely nice and easy so I would really recommend it! Homemade pasta sauce is actually easier than people think and so much better than the shop bought ones. Thanks for reading and hope you enjoy it if you give it a try!

    • I think it would work really well with chicken or prawns. I don’t eat chicken and my husband doesn’t eat prawns so have never tried it. But I know I’d enjoy a few prawns in there! Thanks for reading x

    • Hope you enjoy it if you try it. So easy and fresh. Try it once and you’ll see you can add what you like! Thanks for reading x

    • Haha, yes I know plenty of people who wouldn’t like this because it’s meat free! Bear it in mind for an easy meal if you are ever dining alone πŸ™‚ thanks for reading x

    • Yes olives were just my addition on that occasion. It works with different veggies although they may need pre roasting depending on what they are. Your little one would love the Tomato base! Thanks for reading x

    • It’s really tasty and I love adding olives for a bit of a change. Works well with other veggies though. Next I want to try it with roasted and skinned pepper! Thanks for reading x

  2. My daughter would love this. She loves pasta, tomato based sauces and olives. It would almost be mean for me not to make it for her! Thanks for sharing it with us at #familyfun

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Hello, I'm Angela. I'm Mum to one small person. I'm a Techie, Gardener, cake lover and tea addict. I also have far too many opinions...hence the blog. You can read more about me here. You can also follow me on Twitter so you never miss a post. Hope you enjoy reading!

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