A Sood Family Recipe
Spaghetti with Squash, Almonds and Lardo
Having built up a loyal following over the last year with a string of pop-ups and supper clubs across Hackney, the Sood Family bring their East End take on Italian classics to The Kitchens. For their first ever permanent residence Carlo and head chef Michele are building on a well-earned reputation for serving up elevated street food, like octopus ragu sandwiches and signature Panzerotti (small deep fried calzone), with a seasonal menu of handmade pasta dishes, cured meats and cheeses. Plus one Italian tradition we’re particularly fond of, apperitivo, served with a spritz, Negroni or glass of Puglia-sourced wine from 5pm daily.
Seeing as how the nights are closing in we asked the Soods for a warming, hearty recipe and they shared this butternut squash-based favourite that delivers on comfort but cuts through with the unexpected fresh flavour of pickled winter veg. Just remember to keep it in the family.
Visit them at The Kitchens for lunch or dinner, 7 days a week.
1 Butternut squash
350g Fresh spaghetti or tagliatelle
3 Cloves of garlic
100g Unsalted butter
100g Almond flakes
9 Thin slice of lardo di colonnata
50g Parmesan cheese (30 mths)
50g Pecorino romano dop
100g Extra virgin olive oil
Black pepper to taste
Salt to taste
For the pickling liquid:
4 Cups water
3 Cups sugar
2 Cups white wine vinegar
20g Table salt
1 Teaspoon black pepper
Cut the squash in half, setting a small section aside for pickling, and wrap in foil with some extra olive oil, garlic, thyme, salt and pepper and roast for 50 min at 220C. Scoop out the flesh when ready.
In the meantime make a pickling liquid (water, vinegar, sugar, salt) and bring it to the boil, making sure all the ingredients are dissolved. Cut the leftover squash into very thin slices, place them in a bowl and cover with pickling liquid.
Brown the butter in a pan and add the almond flakes. Drain after a few minutes and season them with salt.
Cook your fresh pasta for 3 to 4 minutes until al dente.
Splash some extra virgin olive oil into a pan, add the chopped garlic, fresh thyme (to be removed), your smashed squash and some of the pasta water and bring everything together with some grated pecorino or parmesan.
Plate up the pasta and finish with some pickled squash ribbons, salted almonds, thyme and thin slices of lardo that will melt with the heat, more cheese and a grind of black pepper.