Fresh Tagliatelle with Zucchini, Ricotta and Lemon Mint Pangratatto

Serves 4


200g fine semolina

200g ‘00’ flour

4 eggs

3 zucchini, finely sliced into half moons

4 cloves of garlic, sliced

1 tsp dried oregano

100g ricotta

10g parsley

10g mint, leaves picked

100g panko breadcrumbs

1 lemon, finely zested

10g mint leaves, finely chopped

2 sprigs of thyme, leaves picked and finely chopped

50g parmesan, finely grated


Start by making the pasta. This can be done either by hand or in a food processor. Sift the flour and semolina onto a work surface and beat the eggs in a small bowl. Make a well in the centre and pour in the beaten eggs. Using your hands or a wooden spoon, mix the eggs in a small circle, incorporating a little flour at a time until all combined. Knead the pieces of dough together, working them until you have a smooth dough.

If using a food processor, add the flour and semolina then add in the eggs, blitzing until all combined. Turn out onto a floured surface and bring together into a ball.

Whichever way you make it, the dough needs to be kneaded well, folded and stretched and pushed back until you have a smooth, elastic dough. It needs to be firm and slightly tacky but not soft and sticky. Wrap in cling film and leave to chill in the fridge for half an hour while you prepare the sauce.

When it comes to rolling out your pasta, this can be done with either a rolling pin or in a machine. Clear your work surface and have a large tray dusted with semolina ready for drying. Cut the pasta into 4 pieces, working 1 at a time and leaving the rest wrapped in cling film so not to dry out.

If making by hand, liberally flour your work surface and roll out the pasta until very thin, 2 mm. Don’t worry about the funny circular shape you end up with. Flour the sheet of pasta and cut into sections, about 20cm long or however long you want you pasta to be. Roll each section of pasta in on itself to form a long cylinder. Use a sharp knife or pizza cutter, cut 1cm strips along the cylinder. Untangle each strip and you will end up with beautiful long pieces of tagliatelle.

By machine, have your roller set to the widest setting. Use a rolling pin to press down the piece of dough so it will fit in the machine. Liberally dust the dough with flour and place in the machine as you roll it to form a flat sheet. Fold the sheet of pasta in half and put back through the machine. Turn the setting down by 1 and pass the pasta back through, repeating to fold in half and pass back again. Turn the setting down again and pass the pasta through. Be sure you dust your sheets of pasta with flour, using your fingers to rub the flour in so it is evenly coated. Pass the pasta through each setting twice before turning the setting down, until you reach the penultimate setting. If the sheet of pasta gets too long and difficult to handle, simply cut it into smaller sized sheets. Lay the sheets on a floured surface and work quickly to shape before they dry out. Pass the sheet through the correct cutter if you have one or dust with flour, roll the sheets up into a cylinder and slice into 1cm strips. Untangle and leave to dry on the tray dusted with semolina. They need to dry enough to feel leathery but not cracking. If not cooking immediately, leave the tray in the fridge.

To make the zucchini sauce, heat a frying pan to medium/high. Add a good drizzle of olive oil and add the onion and zucchini with a good pinch of salt. Keep tossing to cook the zucchini until translucent and softened but not taking on any colour, about 6-8 minutes. Add the garlic and oregano and fry for 1-2 minutes. Transfer the zucchini to a bowl to cool slightly. Add the parsley, mint, ricotta and a squeeze of lemon juice. While still warm, transfer to a blender or use a stick blender to blitz until smooth. Add a splash of water if it seems to thick. Taste and season generously with salt and pepper.

In a frying pan, heat a drizzle of oil and the butter over a medium heat. Add the breadcrumbs, tossing to coat and cook until golden brown. Just before they are finished, add the garlic. Transfer to a plate lined with kitchen paper to cool. When cool, mix the breadcrumbs with the chopped herbs, lemon zest and a pinch of salt.

When you are ready to cook the pasta, bring a saucepan of salted water to the boil, 1tbsp salt:1l water. Warm the zucchini sauce in a separate pan over a low heat.

Cook the pasta for 2-3 minutes or until al dente. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the pasta to the pan of sauce. Add a splash of pasta water to the zucchini sauce if needed to loosen. Toss the pasta in the sauce to evenly coat and thicken the sauce.

Transfer to bowls to serve, topped with grated parmesan and the pangrattato.

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