Spicy Fried Pasta Bake

This amazing pasta dish (originally from Peru) has been the most misunderstood item on the menu of the Melbourne restaurant Smith & Daughters. The staff still beg us to bring it back. It may be similar to spaghetti Bolognese, or anything Italian, but don’t think of it that way, and you’re in for a real treat. It’s delicious and unusual. Make it, and see for yourself!

Serves: 4–6


  • 60ml extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for greasing
  • 500g angel hair pasta, broken into 10cm pieces
  • 1 1/2 onions, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 4 chillies
  • 600g tinned whole tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 500ml chicken stock
  • 400g tinned black beans (or use whatever beans you have)


Preheat the oven to 170°Celsius. Lightly grease a 30cm x 20cm ovenproof dish with olive oil.

Heat the extra-virgin olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.

Add the dry pasta and fry for two or three minutes until golden brown. Drain on paper towel.

Place the onion, garlic, chillies, tomatoes, coriander and oregano in a blender and process until smooth. Transfer the sauce to a pan with the bay leaves and cook over medium heat for approximately 10 minutes, or until thickened.

Stir in the stock, fried pasta and beans, and season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer gently, uncovered, breaking up the pasta with a spoon, for about five minutes.

Remove the bay leaves, then transfer the mixture to the prepared ovenproof dish and cover loosely with foil. Bake for about 20 minutes, until most of the liquid has been absorbed.

Serve, drizzled with cream and perhaps some coriander leaves scattered over the top.

Recipe taken from Smith and Daughters by Mo Wyse and Shannon Martinez

Forget your preconceptions of vegan food. Shannon Martinez and Mo Wyse are here to challenge them all, one inventive dish at a time. Determined to do things differently, they built a restaurant in Melbourne’s Fitzroy called Smith & Daughters. The instant crowds told the story; these were the bold, plant-based flavours people had been waiting for. From Shannon’s take on meatballs and garlic prawns, to Chilean shepherd’s pie and a tantalising line-up of desserts and drinks, these are recipes for anyone who appreciates creative, good food – vegan or otherwise.

You can purchase Smith and Daughters at cooked.com.

Published by Hardie Grant Books.

Related articles:
Lamb Pasta Bake
Tuna Meatballs with Pasta
Filling Pumpkin Salad

Written by Amelia Theodorakis

A writer and communications specialist with eight years’ in startups, SMEs, not-for-profits and corporates. Interests and expertise in gender studies, history, finance, banking, human interest, literature and poetry.

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