So yes, this is an absurdly simple recipe, and at first glance it may seem absolutely bonkers. But if you’re more outraged by a budget food writer rinsing a can of spaghetti hoops off to make an absolutely bastardised riff on a cacio e pepe, than you are at the system that’s forced millions of people into food poverty and to the doors of food banks to receive those spaghetti hoops in the first place, I dare say you might just have your priorities askew.
Serves 1, from 41p each
1 x 400g (or thereabouts) tin of spaghetti hoops or spaghetti in tomato sauce, 16p (16p/395g tin, Just Essentials at Asda)
1 tbsp butter, soft spread, or light cooking oil, 5p (75p/250g, Best For Baking Block, Asda)
40g cheese, 18p (£3.65/825g mature white cheddar, Just Essentials at Asda)
a pinch of salt, <1p (30p/750g, Asda)
a pinch or two of black pepper, <1p (£1/100g, TRS at Asda)
First, tip your spaghetti hoops into a sieve or colander, and gently rinse off the tomato sauce. (See below for tips on keeping it if the thought of sloshing it down the sink doesn’t sit well with you!) Transfer your now-naked hoops to a microwave-safe bowl.
Microwave on full power for 90 seconds, pause, and microwave for 30 seconds more. If you don’t have a microwave, you can tip them into a saucepan and heat them gently on the hob; they may fall apart a little as they’re already quite delicate, but the end result will still be delicious.
Remove the pasta from the microwave and finely grate the cheese over the top. Add the butter or oil and stir in quickly while the hoops are still piping hot to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste, and enjoy immediately.
*About that tomato sauce. If you want to keep it, it can be used in any recipe that calls for tomato puree, but bear in mind it’ll be a lot thinner and slightly sweeter, so will need reducing down in a vigorous boil to concentrate it. Don’t rinse the hoops under the tap for this, instead decant them into a large bowl or jug, and fill the can halfway full with cold water. Pour most of the cold water into the bowl with the hoops and sauce, and mix very gently to thin the sauce. Then pass it through a sieve or colander, using the remaining water from the can to knock off any stubborn clingy bits. Transfer the now-very-runny sauce to a clean jar with a lid, and pop it in the fridge or freezer until you want to use it.
woops wishes it to be known that he came home last night and smashed his laptop screen in the excitement.
tally-7 pints guinnes
1 belgium beer he didn't get round to drinking just carried it around all night as a kind of fetish object
looking into it it seems they have to wear so called 'magic underwear' similar to the way sieks have to carry around a special shank. but whether they wear this in addition to regular underwear i havent worked out yet