Fettuccine with Black Olives, Garlic & Anchovies

Black Olive Fettuccine

Every now and then I get a yen to make some fresh pasta – I eat it so rarely these days given my gluten sensitivity, but when I do I really relish it (and then suffer the next day!). Half of the enjoyment of making pasta is that I get to use my pasta machine – rolling out sheets of silky smooth dough in ever decreasing widths and running them through the pasta cutter to end up with fettuccine or spaghetti that rivals any you get at a restaurant.

You might recall I used black olives and anchovies in my last recipe (the Asparagus with Soft-boiled Eggs & Tapenade) and as they’re ingredients I don’t normally have in the pantry, I wanted to use up the left-overs. An internet search later and I came across this easy little pasta recipe from Marcus Wareing at The Guardian.com. The only change I made was switching spaghetti for fettuccine, but you can absolutely use either. What I liked about this recipe is that it uses few ingredients – in my opinion the best pasta is always simple, just the way the Italians make it. One or two basic ingredients, some fresh herbs scattered on top, and that’s it. Voilà.

If you love a good hit of saltiness this recipe’s for you! Comparatively speaking though, the salty olives and anchovies are enveloped by layers of pasta so each mouthful is balanced beautifully. A generous sprinkling of fresh parsley also does its bit to balance out the flavours. I loved this simple meal and, if you enjoy the taste of olives and anchovies, you will too.


Serves 4

Ingredients: (Click here for Unit Converter)

  • 250g fettuccine (or make your own pastajust halve the recipe on the post, using 2 small eggs & one cup of flour)
  • 50ml light olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 100g pitted, black olives, chopped
  • 8 anchovies, cut into small pieces
  • ½ bunch parsley, finely chopped
  • Salt and black pepper
  • Grated Parmesan (Parmigiano-Reggiano)


  1. In a saucepan, cook the garlic in the oil over a very low heat until tender (approximately 10 minutes).
  2. Add the olives and anchovies, cover the pan and set aside.
  3. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil and cook the fettuccine until al dente, drain then fold through the garlic and olive mix. Season and add the parsley, then serve with grated Parmesan (Parmigiano-Reggiano) on the side.

Food Photography Info: Canon 550D (EOS Rebel T2i); Canon 50mm 1.8 lens / Natural lighting


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