Pappardelle with Rose Harissa, Black Olives, and Capers

Pappardelle with Rose Harissa, Black Olives, and Capers
Jonathan Lovekin

Pappare means “to gobble up,” in Italian, which is the destiny of this dish (particularly in Tara’s house, where her husband, Chris, makes it most Sunday nights). I like it spicy, but the quantity of harissa can easily be reduced. Make the sauce 3 days ahead if you like and keep in the fridge until needed.

This recipe is: S I M P L E
*See note below.


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced (mounded 2 cups/220g)
  • 3 tbsp rose harissa (or 50 percent more or less, depending on variety)
  • 14 oz/400g cherry tomatoes, halved
  • ½ cup/55g pitted kalamata olives, torn in half
  • 2 tbsp baby capers
  • Salt
  • ž cup plus 2 tbsp/ 200ml water
  • ž cup/15g parsley, roughly chopped
  • 1 lb 2 oz/500g dried pappardelle pasta (or other wide flat pasta)
  • ½ cup/120g Greek-style yogurt


  1. Put the oil into a large sauté pan with a lid and place over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the onion and fry for 8 minutes, stirring every once in a while, until soft and caramelized. Add the harissa, tomatoes, olives, capers, and ½ tsp salt and continue to fry for 3–4 minutes, stirring frequently, until the tomatoes start to break down. Add the water and stir to mix thoroughly. Once boiling, decrease the heat to medium-low, cover the pan, and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove the lid and continue to cook for 4–5 minutes, until the sauce is thick and rich. Stir in ½ cup/10g of the parsley and set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, fill a large pot with plenty of salted water and place over high heat. Once boiling, add the pappardelle and cook according to the package instructions, until al dente. Drain well.
  3. Return the pasta to the pot along with the harissa sauce and 1∕8 tsp of salt. Mix together well, then divide among 4 shallow bowls. Serve hot, with a spoonful of yogurt and a final sprinkle of parsley.

Note on categorization from Ottolenghi SIMPLE:

S: Short on time
I: 10 ingredients or less
M: Made ahead
P: Pantry staple
L: Lazy
E: Easy

Extracted from Ottolenghi Simple by Yotam Ottolenghi (Ebury Press, ÂŁ25) Photography by Jonathan Lovekin.

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