• Garganelli alla Norma (Sharyn Cairns)Source: Sharyn Cairns
We always knew tomatoes were romantics at heart and these saucy numbers prove just how much.
20 Nov 2020 - 8:54 AM  UPDATED 24 Nov 2020 - 11:52 PM

--- Embrace the joy of Italian food with Italian chef Masha Rener, Nadia Sawalha's guest in the first episode of Nadia’s Family Feasts, 8.30pm Monday 23 November and then every Monday on SBS Food and SBS On Demand ---


The fresh tomato puree that many Italian families gather to make at the end summer is certainly worth the mess. The Italians sure know how to wield their passata and here's how you can paint your plates red. 

1.  Pizza all'Andrea

A slice of Liguria. While it is a pizza it can also be classified as focaccia topped with olive oil, garlic, white anchovies and olives.

Pizza all'Andrea.

2. Meatballs (polpette) 

Meatball with ease. Scatter with parmesan and basil and grab some crunchy bread to mop up all that rich sauce. 

3. Garganelli alla Norma

Hailing from Sicily, garganelli alla Norma will make your pasta nights interesting again, combining eggplant and a creamy ricotta salata topping.

Garganelli alla Norma

4. Potato polenta with onion, cheese and tomato

Take your spuds and turn them into polenta-like gold. Topped with Pecorino or Gruyère cheese, you can keep this simple and vego-friendly or top with sausages or meatballs.

5. Spinach and ricotta ravioli

That cheesy greens combo is back and this time it's stuffing this homemade ravioli. For the record, this recipe does feed a lot, but you can always freeze half for another time. Yay to leftovers!

6. Cacciuccio (Italian seafood stew)

This hearty and warming Italian seafood stew can be served with crusty sourdough bread or in pie form, depending on what you're in the mood for. 

Cacciucco – Italian seafood stew

7. Salsicce e fagioli

Italian chef Masha Rener shared this easy one-pan dish when she joined Nadia Sawalha in Nadia's Family Feasts. It's an easy combination of onion, garlic, sausages, passata ("we’re obsessive with this!" Rener says of this classic Italian ingredient) and cannellini beans and truly easy to make. This Italian favourite makes a good hearty breakfast but you could just as easily eat it for dinner. Serve with toasted sourdough to mop up all the rich, tomato sauce!

Salsicce e fagiole

8. Italian pork sausage spaghetti

Let the tomatoey sauce simmer away until thick and rich while you cook the spaghetti. This one-pan wonder takes weeknight pasta to a new level.

9. Arancini

Saucy rice, pork and veal mince coated in a cheesy crumb - arancini balls are perfect weekend fare.

10. Eggplant parmigiana

It is one of Italy’s most famous dishes and with its abundant use of eggplant and cheese yet its origins remain in dispute. The name of this cheesy eggplant bake infers that it is cooked "Parma-style" and therefore hails from the Emilia-Romagna region in the north. "Alla parmigiana" also refers to Parma’s most famous cheese, parmesan, which is frequently included. However, the recipe is just as often dubbed a southern creation due to its abundant use of eggplant.

Also, make your own with this easy recipe.

Tomato passata

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