Bottarga pasta with cherry tomatoes and parsley is a traditional Sardinian dish. But what is bottarga? Bottarga is fish roe, usually mullet or tuna, that has been salted, pressed and air-dried. You can find it in 2 forms: in a whole piece or ready-grated. The whole piece of bottarga is usually the finer one. You can eat it sliced on a crunchy bruschetta drizzled with extra virgin olive oil or mixed into salads. One of the most famous starter served in every Sardinian restaurant is “bottarga e carciofi“, thinly sliced artichokes mixed with slices of bottarga drizzled with good quality oil.
If you have never eaten bottarga the best way to try it for the first time is grated over “al dente” pasta dishes, like in this recipe.
But what does bottarga taste like?
Well, it’s for sure salty, a tiny bit bitter, a mix between caviar and anchovies. Describing a taste is not easy but, believe me, bottarga is so tasty. Regarding the texture, bottarga is smooth and sometimes sticky if you don’t slice it very thinly. If you are curious to try it, you can buy bottarga in a variety ofItalian dely shops. I got mine from L C global solution, an on-line shop that sells lots of good quality Sardinian products .
Bottarga pasta is very easy and quick to prepare. A few ingredients for a dish full of flavour. You just have to cook gently for 5 minutes the halved cherry tomatoes with extra virgin olive oil, garlic and chili pepper. Then you add “al dente” spaghetti or linguine and mix with grated bottarga and fresh parsley. That’s it, delicious and ready in less than 30 minutes!
Bottarga pasta with cherry tomatoes and parsley
- pasta , spaghetti or linguine: 320 grams
- cherry tomatoes , halved: 500 grams
- garlic: 1 clove
- fresh parsley , finely choped: 2 tbsp
- bottarga , grated cured mullet roe: 3 tbsp
- extra virgin olive oil: 4 tbsp
- chili pepper or chili flakes, to taste: 1
- In a large frying pan, heat the olive oil. Add the garlic and chili pepper.
- Cook a couple of minutes until the garlic is golden. Add the tomatoes and cook for no more than 5 minutes until they start to break down a little but still holding their shape. Remove the garlic.
- Boil the pasta in a large pan of boiling salted water following the instructions on the pack, but drain it a little "al dente". Toss the pasta into the pan with the tomatoes, add the bottarga and the chopped parsley, mix well and serve.