Linguine della via di Grotta Pinta 45

To tell you about this plate of pasta I need to take you back a couple of years. Back to when I was living in Rome, Italy. I had moved there to learn how to speak Italian, and I rented the most beautiful tiny tiny one bedroom apartment right in the centre of Rome, just around the corner from Campo de’ Fiori. My bedroom was my living room, and my living room was my kitchen … and it was a really small kitchen.

I didn’t have any fancy kitchen appliances or large set of spices, just the very basic: one frying pan, one pot for the pasta, one knife, one small little fridge, salt, pepper, chili flakes, olive oil and a pot of fresh basil in a glass jar in my window (the jar fell down on the roof of a car on my last day in that apartment, but that’s another (very expensive) story). The strange thing with this small kitchen is that I cooked some of the best meals in my life there.

Like this pasta. It is the most simple and basic pasta recipe I know, but it is also my favorite. All you need is a couple of fresh vegetables, some garlic, a can of Borlotti beans and some fresh basil. There are a couple of tricks that make this dish special: 1. Use the best vegetables you can find (make sure the tomatoes smell tomato). 2. Chop the vegetables in large chunks. 3. Don’t let the vegetables saute too long, they should just be tossed around a couple of times in the hot frying pan. 4. Use a lot of olive oil to bring out the flavors.

By the way. I did learn Italian and that made me so proud (even though I have already forgot half of it). I also met Luise there during my last month. Half a year later she moved to Stockholm and now we have a baby girl together.
That is the strangeness of life. I moved to Rome to become Italian and ended up having a baby in Stockholm with the most beautiful danish girl I have ever seen.

Now, let’s eat!

Linguine della via di Grotta Pinta 45
Serves 4

linguine for 4 persons (nowadays we use a gluten free buckwheat linguine)
olive oil
1 onion
2 cloves garlic (chopped)
1 zucchini
10-15 mushrooms
5 large tomatoes
2/3 cup of Borlotti beans
1/3 cup olives
fresh basil
salt and black pepper
parmigiano-reggiano (or pecorino if you prefer that)

Prepare the linguine according to package directions, but set it aside one minute too early. Chop the onion, zucchini, mushrooms and tomatoes in large pieces. Chop the garlic and divide it into three small piles. Saute the onion and zucchini in a large frying pan with some olive oil and some of the garlic at high heat for a short while (around a minute), then pour it over to an empty plate. Without cleaning the pan add some more olive oil, some of the garlic and the mushrooms, saute for about a minute then pour it over to the plate with the zucchini. Add a little bit more olive oil to the pan, the rest of the garlic and the tomatoes. Saute for no more than a minute and then add Borlotti beans, olives, fresh basil, zucchini, mushrooms and the linguine. Stir it around. Add salt and pepper and let it all stir together for another minute. Serve immediately with some grated parmigiano.

Photos by: Johanna Frenkel


  • i've been following for quite some time but never read this post before, i had no idea you lived in rome :) i just left rome and relocated in Mauritius, even though i dream about the Big North....
  • Jiya
    The weather here in Ireland today is amazing today, so sunny and warm, and it asked for a simple, healthy, pretty and delicious Italian meal I thought. I cooked this and it tasted amazing, the best pasta I've ever made I think. Thanks guys!
  • Caprese e acqua guizza. Allora sei proprio mezzo italiano ; )
  • enrica
    una storia davvero dolce come un buon vecchio film!
  • Mi é piaciuta molto la tua storia nella piccola camera, il tuo piccolo salone e la tua piccolissima cucina, nel centro di Roma.
  • Hi ! I am a big fan of your blog. It's radiant, beautiful, fresh. I am Swiss...but half Italian, and Rome is the city of my childhood, so I can't even tell you just how happy I feel when I read a post like this. Thanks.Merci...Grazie !
  • I found your post endearing -- perhaps because my current kitchen is tini-tinny like in the picture -- so I gave your recipe a try. I'm definitely not sorry I did. I will be making this over and over again.
  • I was browsing through your website (i've been reading for a while...) and stumbled upon this. I too fell in love with by husband to be in Rome. It is the most magical place on earth.
  • I fell in love with your story! Also with your recipes and your family. I absolutly adore your page, the pictures, everything! Thanks for sharing!
  • I just stumbled upon your blog while looking for some inspirational recipe, and this one is exactly the one I was looking for :D. You've mastered the Italian way of cooking, and you deserve the appreciation of an Italian like me for this :). The life is strange, btw, and I agree: I'm an Italian guy and I moved to Stockholm last year, so I know the feeling! :) Vi ses snart ;D
  • I have cooked this recipe over and over again! Now that moving to Italy is a reality for me, I'll be using it to keep me dreaming of my new home and make it one of the first of many to be cooked in my Italian kitchen:) Thank you for all of your wonderful recipes! Kassandra

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