Ben's VegTarga

Ben's VegTarga is inspired by the Sardinian dish spaghetti alla bottarga. It's traditionally prepared with cured grey mullet roe. My husband's recipe is an attempt to conjure the same sweet, salty, spicy flavour using vegetables. It's a great way to use up beetroot, carrots and turnips. We get those vegs via our veg bag scheme subscription. 

We normally mix the vegs preparation with wholemeal pasta. 

Ben created this dish a year and a half ago after he had spaghetti alla bottarga on holiday. Nowadays, we cook VegTarga on a regular basis. You can serve it with pasta or rice. 

Peeling the vegs and chopping them does take time but it's completely worth it. Trust me. You may want to prepare double the amount of VegTarga and freeze half of it to save  time. 

Serves 2 people.

  • 1 spring onion (optional)
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 birds eye dried chilli pepper
  • 1 medium beetroot
  • 2 turnips (optional)
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 and 1/2 table spoons of capers (KEY INGREDIENT!)
  • decent quality olive oil
  • 160g wholemeal pasta

Step-by-step instructions: 
  1. Dice the carrots, beetroot (very small) and turnip (very small). 
  2. Fry on medium heat in a little olive oil.
  3. After 12 minutes, add the capers with a little more olive oil.
  4. After another few minutes, add the finely chopped spring onion, garlic and chilli with a little more olive oil.
  5. Stir constantly for 5 minutes while adding a generous table spoon or two of olive oil and leave off heat for 5 minutes.
  6. Stir the pasta into the mixture.