LAWRENCE MURPHY: Quick Italian with an English twist

Lawrence made this simple dish in the middle of the British Food Fortnight
Lawrence made this simple dish in the middle of the British Food Fortnight
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Serves 4

We are in the middle of the British Food Fortnight, which is held at the same time as Harvest Festival and is the biggest annual celebration of British food and drink.

We held a three-course lunch on Saturday with a trip to Hambledon vineyard for a tasting of English Fizz to start off the celebrations.

On Monday I showed 10 people how to make a couple of loaves of bread at Tuppenny Barn and on Sunday we are helping to cook for 80 people on the Quay.

It’s quite a hectic couple of weeks, but it’s great fun to showcase what fantastic food and drink is available in the local area.

With so much preparation to do on Saturday, it left me little time to prepare a meal for ourselves. Some lovely herbs and dried tomatoes were whisked together in an English-style pesto for a tasty supper, and the result was so yummy that I thought you might like to give it a try.


500g dried ditaloni rigati pasta

Small bunch mint

Small bunch parsley

Small bunch basil

1tsp capers

70ml olive oil

1 clove garlic

Pinch sea salt

50g dried baby tomatoes

50g Lord of the Hundreds cheese, grated


1. Cook the pasta in boiling salted water for eight minutes.

2. While the pasta is cooking, pick the leaves from the bunches of mint basil and parsley.

3. Put the leaves in a liquidiser along with the garlic, capers, olive oil and salt and whizz up for 30 seconds. If it looks a little dry, add a little more olive oil.

4. Drain the pasta and mix in the pesto, add the dried tomatoes and top with a little cheese.

Lawrence’s restaurant is Fat Olives, Emsworth. Visit or call 01243 377 914.