Delicious, sustaining and packed with hidden goodness, this simple and comforting dish is perfect for the time-pressed triathlete, crammed with low-GI carbohydrate to maintain energy levels, protein to promote healthy muscle growth and repair, omega-3 essential fatty acids for healthy heart and brain function, as well as antioxidants and minerals to keep the immune system strong.
Equipment: Large saucepan and food processor or pestle and mortar
– 400g fresh tagliatelle
– 100g walnuts
– 200g bacon lardons
– 100g creamy soft cheese
– 1 small clove garlic, crushed
– Squeeze of lemon juice
– Pinch of grated nutmeg
– Salt and plenty of freshly ground black pepper
– A few leaves of fresh, flat-leaf parsley or basil to serve
Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4. Arrange the walnuts on a baking tray and bake in the oven for 5mins until lightly toasted. Remove from the oven, leave to cool, then blitz in a food processor until finely chopped or crush in a pestle and mortar.
In a small bowl, combine the walnuts with the soft cheese, garlic, lemon juice, nutmeg and seasoning.
Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil, and cook the tagliatelle according to the pack instructions. Meanwhile, heat a small frying pan and sauté the lardons for 5mins, or until nicely crisp and golden. You won’t need to add oil, the lardons will cook in their own fat. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon and place on kitchen paper to soak up the excess fat.
Drain the pasta when it’s cooked, reserving a small ladleful of the cooking water. Return the pasta and reserved water to the saucepan, stir in the cheese mixture and combine. Serve in warmed bowls, scatter with the crispy lardons and decorate with some basil or parsley leaves.
Nutrition per serving
(Images: Ewelina Karbowiak)
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