This pasta dish with tomato, olive, anchovy, basil & lemon is pure heaven in a bowl. I’ve tossed capers and garlic in too for good measure. It reminds me of summer and everything I love to eat. When I dream of this, I also dream of long lazy lunches on a patio overlooking the sea with regular swims to cool off. It contains some of my favourite flavours and it makes me very happy.

Tidal Pool, false Bay, Cape Town, South Africa

I did the food styling for my client UCook recently and this was one of the dishes we shot for their website. They are South Africa’s best home-cooking meal delivery service and I love their recipes. They source top quality produce and ethically farmed meat so you can trust that your food comes from a good place. I’ve made so many of their recipes before and blogged about a few of them. My two favourite are the trout cooked en papillote – which is so ultra-delicious and healthy I eat it almost every week. The oven-baked cauliflower risotto is another winning recipe which I’ve made a few times.

A recipe for a delicious summer pasta with tomato, olives, anchovy, basil & lemon

A recipe for a delicious summer pasta with tomato, olives, anchovy, basil & lemon

A recipe for a delicious summer pasta with tomato, olives, anchovy, basil & lemon

I played around with a few of the ratios for this dish but kept the list of ingredients the same as theirs (apart from adding a sprinkling of smoked chilli flakes). I love all these flavours so much and really wanted my pasta to be super punchy, but you can adapt this to your liking. I think adding pan-fried prawns to the final dish would be amazing and definitely something I want to try soon.

I’ve called it a summer pasta but it can be made all year round. It’s especially nice in winter when you are craving a summery day. 

Recipe serves 2

Pasta with tomato, olives, anchovy, basil & lemon
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  1. 250gms long noodle pasta (spaghetti or linguini)
  2. 3 – 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped or crushed
  3. ½ - 1 green or red chilli de-seeded and finely chopped (additional dried chilli flakes too if desired)
  4. 6 – 8 anchovy fillets, roughly chopped
  5. 50g black Calamata olives, de-pitted and halved
  6. 30 gm capers drained and roughly chopped
  7. 300gms baby tomatoes halved
  8. Bunch basil (about 10gms) roughly chopped
  9. Small bunch parsley (about 8gms) roughly chopped
  10. Zest of half a lemon
  11. 30 – 40gms grated Parmesan or however much you like
  12. olive oil for cooking
  13. Sea salt & black pepper
  1. Bring a large pot of water to the boil and salt generously. Cook the pasta according to the pack instructions and until al dente. Once cooked drain and set aside with a little olive oil drizzled over to separate the noodles.
  2. While the water is boiling, chop up all the ingredients in the recipe as mentioned above. Set aside.
  3. When the pasta is nearly ready, heat a non-stick pan over a medium heat and add a generous glug of olive oil. Cook the tomatoes for about 1 minute then add the garlic and chilli. Toss around the pan for about 2 minutes. Add the anchovies, olives and capers and cook for a further minute or two. Add a splash of water if necessary and if the ingredients start to stick to the pan. Swirl around to ensure the water emulsifies with the sauce.
  4. Add the drained pasta to the sauce and add the lemon zest. Once it’s heated through and mixed, remove the pan from the heat and add the chopped herbs. Serve immediately with the grated Parmesan cheese and extra fresh basil if desired. Season to taste with salt and black pepper.
Drizzle and Dip
For my other Ucook recipes:

Trout with fennel & tomatoes

Oven-roasted cauliflower risotto

Chicken & mushroom stroganoff with crispy sage

Grilled soy and lime hake with charred greens, fresh tomato & a chilli dressing

A recipe for a delicious summer pasta with tomato, olives, anchovy, basil & lemon



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  1. Seriously tasty dish. So quick and easy too. Thank you!

  2. Sam

    Thanks Ken – I’m glad you found it tasty. Its my fave.

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