Another cuttlefish recipe? That’s right! This time it’s the simplest recipe for pasta with cuttlefish stewed in tomato sauce with fresh herbs. Yes. It is very similar to my recipe for ‘cuttlefish and spaghetti in ink sauce’, but for this recipe here you do not need to bother with removing and opening the messy ink sac, which means you can use an already-cleaned cuttlefish or even frozen ones. I also dice the cuttlefish meat very finely for this dish, which drastically decreases the time it needs to stew on the stove (from 1.5 hours of stewing for the other recipe to 40 minutes max. for this one). Hooray!
While it has less ingredients than my other cuttlefish and pasta recipe, and while it also needs less time on the stove, this tomato-y pasta is still full of that rich, seafood-y, umami goodness you’d want from a seafood pasta. Part of that rich umami flavour comes from the cuttlefish, of course, but it comes from tomatoes as well. I use whole canned plum tomatoes here instead of the combination of fresh tomato and tomato paste I use in my other recipe. The use of canned plum tomatoes isn’t only easy, but ensures your tomato sauce will be full of flavour without being dependent on whether you can find perfectly ripe tomatoes.
Pasta with Cuttlefish in Tomato Sauce
- 1kg whole cuttlefish (about 600g cleaned)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 yellow onion
- 1 garlic clove
- 150ml dry white wine
- 1 can whole peeled plum tomatoes (400g)
- 1 tablespoon capers
- Small bunch of fresh dill
- Small bunch of fresh chervil, or flat leaf parsley
- Salt to taste
- pepper to taste
- 250g ditalini, or other small-shaped pasta
- Clean the cuttlefish by taking of the skin and removing the insides. Keep the tentacles.
- Dice the cuttlefish into 1cm cubes. Roughly chop the tentacles.
- Finely dice the onion and garlic and finely chop the fresh dill and chervil. Set aside.
- Heat one tablespoon of olive oil in a large pan over medium-high heat. Add the diced onion and garlic and sauté until the onion turns slightly translucent. Then add the diced cuttlefish and sauté until opaque and white.
- Deglaze the pan with the white wine and allow alcohol to evaporate for a minute. Add the canned plum tomatoes and use the back of a wooden spoon to squish them. Add the chopped herbs and capers and season with a little salt and pepper. Turn the heat to low and allow to simmer for 30 - 40 minutes or until the little cuttlefish pieces are tender. If the mixture gets very dry during cooking add a little water.
- When the cuttlefish is almost done cooking, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the ditalini (or other) according to instructions on the package.
- Drain the pasta and stir through the cuttlefish sauce. Allow to cook for 1 more minute stirring continuously until the sauce coats the pasta well. Season with a little more salt and pepper if necessary.