rick stein’s filthy macaroni

Very quick post tonight – just time to rattle off the FILTHY macaroni!

Ah Rick Stein, let us count the ways we love you. Your food is simply delicious. You look like a Waitrose take on Brendan from Coach Trip. You have a great sense of humour which shines through all of your shows. You make us both feel confident that when we get to 70 we’ll still have a twinkle in our eyes and the ability to act slightly camp in unusual situations. People at work have decreed that I must want to stare moonily through his windows at him because I idolise him so much.

Gush, gush. Look, we’ve only just happened across Rick via his Long Weekends show on BBC2. For years we didn’t bother because most of his meals revolve around seafood and although god knows we’ll put most things in our mouth without blinking, neither of us have ever managed to get away with fish.  We spotted, however, that he was holidaying in Berlin and Iceland for his show, staying both times at the same hotels we did, and since then we’ve become massive fans. He’s brilliant! Let’s do the recipe, then, shall we? I absolutely can’t claim this as one of our own – it’s all darling Rick’s work. The original recipe is called sporki macaroni which he doesn’t like as it means dirty pasta. Frankly, we like him so much we’re going to call the recipe FILTHY macaroni! 

You can buy Rick’s book with this recipe from Amazon and I’d heartily recommend it – yes, you’ll spend syns per meal but christ it’s worth it. Click here for that. Oh and we’re not getting paid to promote Rick. I reckon the fact we bought two fish and chips from his little outlet in Padstow means we’ve given him enough money. They were delicious.

filthy macaroni

to make filthy macaroni, you’ll need:

  • 400g lean beef – we used one of the packets of diced lean beef you get in our Musclefood deal – very tasty meat indeed! Have a look!
  • small red onions, chopped
  • small carrots, sliced
  • bay leaf (we have a little plant growing in the garden – buy one and never look back)
  • pinch of salt
  • a good grinding of black pepper, then do it again – you can never have too much
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced, using a fabulous little mincer that feels good in the hand, such as this one
  • 300ml chicken stock
  • a few handful of spinach
  • 250ml full-bodied red wine (11.5 syns – this serves 4 and I reckon most of it boils off, so let’s live life on the edge and call it 2.5 syns each) (don’t tell Mags though, she’ll key my car with her nails)
  • 600g pasta – any old shite will do, but we used penne that’s been rattling around amongst the weevils for the last year – only the best

to make filthy macaroni, you should:

  • unusually for a gay man, I’m going to recommend you brown off your beef – do this by putting a drop of oil in a decent, heavy pan, getting it sizzling and then dropping in the beef – better to do this in two batches rather than trying to cram your meat into a space that perhaps isn’t designed to accommodate it all at once (also unusual for me to say…)
  • add the chopped onions and carrots and stir
  • once these are brown, add the bay leaf and a good pinch of salt and all the pepper
  • stir in the tomato puree, cinnamon and garlic and fry gently for a couple of minutes
  • add the red wine and chicken stock – heat all the way up to a gentle simmer, cover with a lid and cook for about an hour or so until the meat is tender
  • about fifteen minutes before, cook up your pasta – don’t cook it to mush, keep it nice and al dente (not Al Murray) – and about five minutes before it is done throw the spinach in – drain the pasta, add to the meat sauce and stir – then cook on a low heat for another ten minutes to get the flavours working together

Done! Rick serves with chopped parsley but I’d genuinely rather set my eyes on fire than do that. Bleurgh. It’s the Devil’s Pubic Hair!

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