Linguine della via di Grotta Pinta 45

To tell you about this plate of pasta I need to take you back a couple of years. Back to when I was living in Rome, Italy. I had moved there to learn how to speak Italian, and I rented the most beautiful tiny tiny one bedroom apartment right in the centre of Rome, just around the corner from Campo de’ Fiori. My bedroom was my living room, and my living room was my kitchen … and it was a really small kitchen.

I didn’t have any fancy kitchen appliances or large set of spices, just the very basic: one frying pan, one pot for the pasta, one knife, one small little fridge, salt, pepper, chili flakes, olive oil and a pot of fresh basil in a glass jar in my window (the jar fell down on the roof of a car on my last day in that apartment, but that’s another (very expensive) story). The strange thing with this small kitchen is that I cooked some of the best meals in my life there.

Like this pasta. It is the most simple and basic pasta recipe I know, but it is also my favorite. All you need is a couple of fresh vegetables, some garlic, a can of Borlotti beans and some fresh basil. There are a couple of tricks that make this dish special: 1. Use the best vegetables you can find (make sure the tomatoes smell tomato). 2. Chop the vegetables in large chunks. 3. Don’t let the vegetables saute too long, they should just be tossed around a couple of times in the hot frying pan. 4. Use a lot of olive oil to bring out the flavors.

By the way. I did learn Italian and that made me so proud (even though I have already forgot half of it). I also met Luise there during my last month. Half a year later she moved to Stockholm and now we have a baby girl together.
That is the strangeness of life. I moved to Rome to become Italian and ended up having a baby in Stockholm with the most beautiful danish girl I have ever seen.

Now, let’s eat!

Linguine della via di Grotta Pinta 45
Serves 4

linguine for 4 persons (nowadays we use a gluten free buckwheat linguine)
olive oil
1 onion
2 cloves garlic (chopped)
1 zucchini
10-15 mushrooms
5 large tomatoes
2/3 cup of Borlotti beans
1/3 cup olives
fresh basil
salt and black pepper
parmigiano-reggiano (or pecorino if you prefer that)

Prepare the linguine according to package directions, but set it aside one minute too early. Chop the onion, zucchini, mushrooms and tomatoes in large pieces. Chop the garlic and divide it into three small piles. Saute the onion and zucchini in a large frying pan with some olive oil and some of the garlic at high heat for a short while (around a minute), then pour it over to an empty plate. Without cleaning the pan add some more olive oil, some of the garlic and the mushrooms, saute for about a minute then pour it over to the plate with the zucchini. Add a little bit more olive oil to the pan, the rest of the garlic and the tomatoes. Saute for no more than a minute and then add Borlotti beans, olives, fresh basil, zucchini, mushrooms and the linguine. Stir it around. Add salt and pepper and let it all stir together for another minute. Serve immediately with some grated parmigiano.

Photos by: Johanna Frenkel