“I enjoyed a taste of this colourful bowlful at the old fruit and veg market on the outskirts of Rome. It’s a hectic place, but boy is everyone friendly. What I love is how such a simple combo of good ingredients really allows each one to sing. It’s cheap, tasty, honest food, and the result is super-versatile, meaning it can be enjoyed as a side dish, an antipasto, tossed through pasta, piled on bruschetta, or even baked in a frittata. ”
Place a large frying pan on a high heat with 1 tablespoon of oil. Peel and lightly squash the garlic clove and add to the pan, moving it around to perfume the oil. Slice the guanciale into rough 1cm chunks and add to the pan to let the fat render out. Trim the courgettes, halve lengthways, then chop into 2cm chunks. Stir into the pan, then season with a little sea salt and a good pinch of black pepper. Halve or quarter the tomatoes, deseed, and add to the pan. Pick, roughly chop and add the parsley leaves.
Reduce the heat to medium and cook for about 15 minutes, or until softened, stirring occasionally. This gives you a really fresh, delicious courgette dish full of life, just how Nonna Maria made it. Or you can turn the heat down lower and cook it for 40 minutes, so you get a deeper, sweeter, frumpier result, adding a splash of water to loosen, if needed. Both ways are delicious, and celebrate courgettes at their very best. Just before serving, taste and check you’ve got the seasoning spot on.