In Nigellissima episode 3, Nigella shares the secrets of delicious Italian-inspired food. She treats her friends to an Italian-style supper of pork loin stuffed with parma ham and oregano, served alongside her speedy mock mash and lazy person’s vignarola – a recipe based on the traditional Roman spring stew of broad beans, peas and artichokes.
For her pasta dish, Nigella is cooking spelt spaghetti – an earthy choice to match a fresh, no-cook olive and anchovy sauce. And Nigella’s weekend indulgence is sambuca kisses – delicate, doughnut-like treats, so light that one would never be enough.
Nigellissima episode 3 recipes:
Spelt Spaghetti with olives and anchovies
This spaghetti and herb flecked, fragrant sauce are made for each other. Its modest appearance utterly belies its magnificence. One taste and it’s kapow! It’s great cold too. To make it you’ll need: spelt spaghetti, green olives, anchovy fillets (from can or jar), garlic, lemon, pine nuts, parsley.
This is fabulous. The reason I call this mock mash is because it tastes like mashed potato, but the crucial ingredient is actually semolina. It’s very savoury and particularly good with my pork loin. To make it you’ll need: semolina, milk, butter, nutmeg, parmesan.
Broad beans, peas and artichokes
This roman inspired braised dish is an easy peasy freezer standby. I always keep a stash of broad beans, peas, and artichokes (bottoms – not hearts) in the freezer for this. It takes no time at all. To make it you’ll need: petits pois, broad beans, and artichoke bottoms (all from the freezer), garlic oil, butter, fresh thyme, mint, parsley, dry white wine or vermouth.
Pork loin with Parma ham and oregano
You may have noticed that I said the pork loin should be de-rinded. I didn’t say you wouldn’t want the rind as well. The ciccioli – as Italian pork scratchings (give or take) are known – make for very fine aperitivo-accompanying morsel.
It’s hard to explain the precise nature of these: they are light, almost like doughnuts, but made of scented, sweet air rather than batter. Strictly speaking, you shouldn’t leave them to stand once they’ve been made. But pleasurable though it is to eat them as soon as you can – once they’re out of the pan – I have found they’re fine for a while in a low oven. The contrast between outside and inside is lost rather, but not so much as you gain in the convenience of being able to make them ahead.
Iced berries with limoncello white chocolate sauce
What makes this fantastic for a last-minute, even impromptu, dinner party pud (with interesting Christmas potential) is that you can keep the berries in the deep freeze until needed. I suppose you could, in summer, use fresh berries, though you would lose the contrast between warm rich sauce and sharp icy fruit.