Angel Hair Nests with Olive "Eggs"|
I had purchased some angel hair pasta nests on sale thinking they were kind of cute and that I could come up with something clever using them. Two years later, after getting tired of moving around the package and having leftover olives from a party, inspiration finally struck - and it was well worth the wait! This recipe is very simple and quick to make - even the pasta nests cook faster than most other pastas - and makes a great vegetarian entree (if you use vegetable broth rather than chicken broth), side dish, or first course. You can use any olives you have on hand, or if you make a trip to your local olive bar you can pick a bunch of different colored and shaped olives out to use. Just make sure to stay away from olives that are stuffed or marinated in ingredients that will clash with the flavors of the sauce. If you cannot find preformed pasta nests, you can easily make your own by forming nests with cooked spaghetti or angel hair. Some olive brines are stronger than others - and if you use too much it might get overwhelming. Start with half a cup and taste after simmering for a minute or two before adding more if desired.
8 angel hair pasta nests
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 chopped shallots or 1/2 small onion
2 minced garlic cloves
1 teaspoon herbes de Provence, Italian herbs, or favorite herb mixture
Freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups mixed olives
1 cup chicken or vegetable stock
1/2-1 cup brine from the olives
Heat a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and prepared the pasta nests according to the package directions. While the pasta is cooking, add the olive oil to the skillet, and once hot add the shallots and saute for 2 minutes. Add the garlic, herbs, and pepper and saute for a minute more. Add the olives, stock, and olive brine and bring to a boil. Simmer until the sauce is thickened and reduced by about half and serve hot over the cooked pasta nests.
Makes 4 main dish servings or 8 appetizer or side dish servings.
Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes