I love it when I get the chance to try out new varieties of old favourites that I may have by-passed in the supermarket aisles otherwise. That's certainly the case for this Dallaglio for Sacla sauce. I couldn't see what an international rugby star could possibly have to do with good food, apart from trying to convince star-struck male rugby fans to buy it when they saw it on the shelves (!), but Sacla explain : "Last year, Sacla, best known for its pesto, teamed up with international rugby star, Lawrence Dallaglio, and his foodie father, Vincenzo, to create a new range of sauces. The first three were launched in September - they are Barbera Bolognese, a Barbera (again, from Piemonte) wine-rich classic Bolognese sauce; Tricolore, a herby tomato, mozzarella and basil sauce and Diavola, a fiery garlic and chilli tomato sauce, which is big on flavour and high on heat !"
Well, Sacla offered me the chance of trying a jar of their Diavola pasta sauce so I was hardly going to turn them down, was I ?! Despite being slightly sceptical about the Dallaglio name-dropping, I was pretty convinced I'd like the sauce because, in my experience, Sacla create consistently high quality products.
I did the ultimate test and tasted a spoonful straight out of the jar, cold, before incorporating it into a meal - yummmm ! It doesn't taste like something out of a jar at all, it tastes like freshly chopped tomatoes and garlic and cleverly blended herbs and spices. The chilli heat is deliciously warming but not at all overpowering so I wouldn't call it fiery. It has just enough heat to add a delicious kick to your meal without setting your tongue on fire !
This would be absolutely delicious just spooned over pasta and topped off with parmesan for a quick supper or used as a delicious pizza base. I incorporated it into a Fish Supreme dish that I found in Healthy Food Guide magazine - white fish with a jar of tomato sauce spooned over the top then baked in the oven, topped with cooked rice, mixed with peas, sweetcorn and sun-dried tomato pesto (which, luckily, Sacla had also sent me to review !) then covered in grated cheese. The garlic and chilli in the sauce gave the dish great depth and took it to a whole new level. Madhouse Daddy Mike declared it delicious and he's not usually a huge fan of fish.
Sacla also gave me a recipe - a variaton of a Dallaglio family recipe - to try out the sauce too.
Linguine with Red Wine Mussels & Diavola Sauce
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for serving
2 large cloves garlic, peeled & thinly sliced
75 ml red wine
2k mussels, scrubbed & de-bearded
1 x 300g jar Dallaglio for Sacla’ Diavola Pasta Sauce
15g shredded basil leaves
5g roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley
You will also need some muslin or a piece of clean cloth for straining the mussel liquor.
Add the oil, garlic and the red wine to a large shallow pan and bring to the boil. Cook the mussels in batches, adding enough to half-fill the pan. Cover with a lid and cook for 3-4 minutes until all the mussels have opened, shaking the pan from time to time. Lift out with a slotted spoon to a large bowl to cool. Continue to cook the rest of the mussels in the same way, retaining all the cooking liquor.
Remove the mussels from their shells, discarding any that remain closed. Roughly chop.
Line a sieve with the muslin or cloth, set it over a bowl and strain through the mussel liquor to get rid of any grit or shell.
Put a large pan of salted water on for the linguine and when it’s boiling add a slug of olive oil.
In a pan, combine the pasta sauce with the mussel liquor. Simmer until slightly reduced and thickened. Add the mussels and basil and simmer for 5-10 minutes. You are unlikely to need any salt as the liquor will already be quite briny and salty.
Cook the pasta according to the pack instructions, then drain and transfer to a warmed serving dish. Spoon over the mussel sauce, sprinkle with parsley and a slick of extra virgin olive oil to serve.
star rating : 5/5
RRP : £1.99
for more information : http://www.dallagliobysacla.co.uk/dallaglio-range
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