Carmarthen ham, asparagus ribbons and ricotta fusilli

This has to be one of the quickest recipes around so there’s no excuse not to get cooking in the week. Keep it simple and keep it delicious! I love the lightness ricotta brings which makes the other ingredients sing!


Ingredients- serves 4
300g dried fusilli
1 banana shallot- finely sliced
2 garlic cloves- finely chopped
1 small red chilli- deseeded and finely chopped
4 slices of Carmarthen or Parma ham- cut into pieces
150g asparagus- ribboned with a vegetable peeler
4 tbsp ricotta

1. Start off by boiling a large pan of water and cook the fusilli according to packet instructions. Meanwhile take a large frying pan and heat a glug of vegetable oil over a medium heat. Pop in the shallot, garlic and chilli and cook out for a minute or so. Next up goes the asparagus and ham. Cook for an additional couple of minutes until the asparagus has a slight crunch to it and the ham is cooked through.

2. Drain the pasta well, add a little olive oil and stir through the ricotta whilst the pan is on the heat. Add in the asparagus and ham mix and combine. You may also like to top with a parmesan and panko crumb for added texture. Simply take the panko and parmesan and toast in a dry pan before sprinkling over.

A light, fresh pasta for a summer day!

Sweet roasted tomato, asparagus and Carmarthen ham spaghetti

This is the perfect pasta that can be thrown together when time is short and hunger levels are high. Raid your fridge for seasonal treats and get cooking! Carmarthen ham is a Welsh delicacy that can be ordered online but you can use Parma ham instead.


Ingredients-serves 2
Glug of oil
1 garlic clove- crushed
1 small red chilli- finely chopped
Handfuls baby plum or cherry tomatoes- halved lengthways
4 slices of Carmarthen ham or Parma ham- cut into pieces
Small pack of asparagus tips- cut into thirds
Handful of basil
150g dried spaghetti

1. Get started by pre using the oven to 160c/ 140 fan. Take the halved tomatoes and lay on a baking tray cut side up. Drizzle with a little olive oil, salt, pepper and some chopped basil. Roast for a few minutes until softened and smelling wonderful. Cover and set aside. If you like, you can also roast the asparagus with the tomatoes by I like to quickly pan fry to keep a bit of crunch to them.

2. Boil a large pan of water ready to cook the spaghetti according to the packet instructions. Meanwhile take a large frying pan and heat a glug of oil over a medium heat before adding the garlic and chilli. Throw in the asparagus and cook together for a couple of minutes. Next up goes the sliced ham to cook for a further couple of minutes.

3. When the spaghetti is ready, drain well and add to the frying pan. Pop in the roasted tomatoes and toss the asparagus mix through the pasta to heat. Add an extra glug of oil if it looks a little dry but the tomatoes should add an extra bit of moisture.

Serve with some additional basil stirred through it if you like and a good grate of fresh parmesan cheese. Dish up into warm bowls and dig in.

Roasted tomato, fresh asparagus and ham spaghetti- your answer to a midweek dinner dilemma!

Carmarthen ham pasta with garlic and chilli

This is probably the most quick, straightforward but most delicious meal I have posted so read on. Carmarthen ham comes from a market town in Wales and is similar to Parma ham however the recipe for Carmarthan ham is said to predate its Italian counterpart. Carmarthen ham follows a traditional recipe and the slices are slightly thicker but less fatty and less salty that Parma ham however the pasta can be made with either.

I have kept this recipe simple so you can taste each element in all its glory so don’t be tempted to overdo it with any additions. You can find information about Carmarthen ham and order it  from the butcher over at– you won’t find this anywhere else! A quick word of advice: buy more than you think you need as, if you’re anything like me, most will be eaten before it even hits the pan!

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Ingredients- serves 2
200g spaghetti
30g butter
1 large garlic clove- crushed or finely chopped
1 small red chilli (fresh or dried)- deseeded and finely chopped
4 slices of your ham of choice- cut into thin slices
Parmesan to serve

1. Boil a large pan of water and cook the spaghetti according to the instructions. I keep mine slightly al dente.

2. When the pasta is a few minutes away from being ready take a medium sized pan and heat the butter. Cook the garlic and chilli for a couple of minutes until they release their flavour but be careful not to overcook- nobody wants burnt, bitter garlic! Add the slices of ham and cook for a further minute.

3. Drain the pasta well and add into the saucepan with the ham and toss to coat well. Serve in warmed bowls with a helping of grated Parmesan.

Carmarthen ham pasta with garlic and chilli- so simple and yet so effective! Treat yourself to a pack or two and you’ll definitely be hooked!