Wednesday, 24 July 2013

It all ended with a Jar of Fish Paste and A Girl Called Jack


I've been trying to re-create a meal I love and have on a regular basis at Pr*zzo, our favourite Italian eating house, for quite a while now.  I object somewhere at the back of my mind paying for pasta when I'm out even though they do vouchers which mean that usually when we eat there it's Two for One or Buy One get One for £2.50, but still when you know you can get a great big bag of pasta for less than a pound it seems extravagant to have this too often.  Being able to make this luscious meal at home has been my one aim for months now.
 
The meal is Penne Con Salmone, this is how it's listed on their menu -
 

'PENNE CON SALMONE'

Salmon fillet, broccoli and red chilli in a red pesto and cream sauce'
 
and it costs £10.95 for the 'Classic' version.   So even at half price if we use a voucher it is still £5.50, I guess if I class it as the £2.50 meal on that particular offer it's not too bad, but still I wondered was it possible to get that cost even lower at home and have the same delicious flavours and thus be able to eat it more often.
 
Then I saw  this recipe on Jack's Blog - A Girl Called Jack.
 

 
I printed it out and had a go the other night (before we started Juicing).  It took us a while to even find the pastes in Sainsb*ry's, I've not used them for years and have never thought of incorporating them into other recipes and not simply smearing them onto sandwiches.  Absolutely inspired.

 
 
Well who knew!!
 
 
That's it, the exact same flavours as the 'posh' restaurant dish, and using Jacks recipe exactly comes in at 27p a head, yes that's right 27p.
  
Now I had to change it slightly as I had no yoghurt made up but did have some slightly out of date double cream, so that went in instead, I also had no fresh chilli, but I did have a jar of just dried chillies off my plant so I used one of those instead.
 
If I was making it again I would add some frozen broccoli to the pan of pasta as it was cooking and recreate even more exactly the restaurants version.  But this time I kept to the recipe as much as I could,. and just added some of our home grown tomatoes to the plate and it was delicious.  Just what we like nice simple straightforward, cheap and tasty food.  One we'll definitely be turning to again and again.
 
  
So it all ended with a 32p jar of fish paste.
 
And just think of what you could do with all the other flavours available, we have to stop thinking of them as simply sandwich spreads and start thinking of them as 'mushed up ingredients' !!
 
Thanks Jack :-)
 
Sue xx
 
To read the recipe more easily just click on the picture.
 
 

28 comments:

  1. Thank you so much for posting this. I love the taste of salmon but I baulk at paying out for it! This sounds perfect. Lesley x

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    1. The salmon flavour in this is amazing, you would honestly not know that it was from a little jar of paste!!

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  2. I'm totally with you on not ordering pasta when/if I eat out. The same goes for jacket potatoes!

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    1. I know totally amazing that they expect you to pay usually over £5 for a 'kept warm all day' or zapped in the microwave potato with a dollop of topping!!

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  3. I follow Jack and made this recipe, we loved it. I am making it again at the weekend for friends and am going to go all "cheffy" and stir 1/2 pack of smoked salmon trimmings through it at the end. with some fresh rocket from the garden it should be a tasty dish.

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  4. I make this with red pesto and some of the smoked salmon trimmings theat Sainsbury do for 99 p per pack - half a pack between two of us for the pasta dish ( yes with broccoli on the side ) and the other half of the pack with scrambled eggs.

    Delish and very frugal ( if not quite as frugal as fish paste!)

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    1. I too use the smoked salmon trimmings, but was shocked to see (a couple of weeks ago) that they were now charging £1.50 a pack for them. I looked in two different branches but it was the same in each, so obviously not a mistake. As I do not have a Sainsbury any where near I am actually living at present, in the end I gave in and bought a pack for the freezer and reasoned that it was still a cheap meal at 75p a head. Will try this with fish paste though, as love pasta.

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    2. Try the fish paste Sarah, you'll love it :-)

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    3. It sounds good with the trimmings, I like Pam's idea of mixing the two it would make the trimming go that much further.

      Food is simply shooting up in price isn't it, last year things crept up by a penny here and penny there but now it's 50p hikes all over the shop, not good!

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  5. I'm amazed that they still sell fish paste! I haven't seen one of those jars since I left the UK !
    Jane x

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    1. It took me ages to find it in the supermarket, it was in the Jam and Marmalade aisle in the end!!

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  6. Sure I have a jar of that stuff somewhere, the eldest boy used to like it.

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    1. My boys used to love it, they had it plain on sandwiches and I used to add cucumber if I had some. It used to cost even less when they were little something like 10p a jar.

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  7. I saw this recipe too and it is so inspired! I am a great lover of salmon so will definitely be trying it!

    I also love this dish at Pr*zzo.

    Sft x

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    1. We have very similar tastes in lots of things :-)

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  8. A lot of us read Jack - I saw this recipe too! Although I've not yet tried it - it's on the menu plan for when hubby goes back to work.

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    1. Well worth a try, I highly recommend it. SO many of her recipes are really good. Excellent flavours from really cheap ingredients.

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  9. Another Jack reader here (she got a mention on tonight's Superscrimpers!) but I have to confess this recipe did not appeal to me at all when I first saw it. Maybe I'll reconsider it as I do love the salmon and pasta combination

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    1. At first the thought of the lemon added put me off slightly but I followed the recipe and YES, it does work.

      She's getting mentioned everywhere at the moment which is brilliant, but I'm sick of the few that are permanently picking at her in comments online. We seem to have a bad habit in this country of looking for the bad side of folk (even if it's not actually there) and wanting to knock people of the pedestal that we have placed them on in the first place.

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  10. I don't think I could eat it as sandwich spread these days though did regularly as a child. Recipe looks fab !

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    1. I don't know if I could either, maybe with lots of salad it would be okay.

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  11. Yes another Jack reader here too, I think this is a brilliant recipe even though it doesn't appeal to me. Sorry. Jack is such an inspiration to us all, she takes her inventiveness to another level and proves you don't have to spend a fortune to eat gourmet style food. Glad you enjoyed your meal xx

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    1. It honestly just makes the pasta taste really salmony and rich, it's the best thing I've had in ages.

      She is really inventive isn't she :-)

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  12. Well this is a meal I must try. I am on a self cost cutting challenge at the moment so this recipe fits perfectly. I have been on the hunt for healthy and cheap recipes and have been amazed with some that I have found, definitely not as cheap as this one though!

    My grandma used to love fish paste :)

    x

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  13. It's a great idea that I will definitely be trying. I have a little boy who likes the salmon one, so I'm thinking he will love it with pasta.

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  14. Personally I would eat this out , and if it cost me 5 pounds I would buy it ,, and if it was two meals for that , so much the better , as for Fish paste ,, oh my word ,, not sure I could eat it.

    We (I) have pasta most days ,, love it,

    Who is Jack??

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    1. Jack is Jack Monroe, click on the links in this post to go to her Blog, or look for the link on my sidebar - A Girl Called Jack.

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