Spaghetti alla Fi Fi

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Serves Enough for 8 people

I’m guessing by now you know I’m a little obsessed with pasta.  Most of my pasta recipes are inspired from my childhood.  Growing up in Italian restaurants I watched my Mum and Auntie cook hundreds of bowls of pasta. There is something just so comforting about a bowl of homemade pasta.

This particular creation is one I conjured up in my mind, so I’ve named it ‘Spaghetti alla Fi Fi” (a nickname my family gave me many moons ago).

I’ve never put carrot in a pasta sauce before but surprisingly this really works.  And it’s great with spaghetti and the julienne carrot and zucchini pair so beautifully with spaghetti.  It’s a tad sweet, a tad salty with a chili after taste.

Spaghetti alla Fi Fi

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Serves Enough for 8 people


  • 2 carrots
  • 2 zucchinis
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 fresh chili
  • 6 semi-dried tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 1/4 cup water
  • juice from half a lemon
  • 1/4 cup breadcrumbs
  • one packet of spaghetti - wheat gluten free


  1. Chop up garlic finely. Ribbon the carrots and zucchini (I use a special grater to do this).
  2. Cook the garlic until slightly translucent (don’t let it brown).
  3. Add the carrot and zucchini ribbons and cook for three minutes.
  4. Add wine, water, salt, chili and sun dried tomatoes. Cook for 15 minutes on medium heat.
  5. Cook spaghetti until al dente (meaning firm).
  6. Once cooked, toss the spaghetti through sauce and top with breadcrumbs and lemon juice.
  7. Add Parmesan if you like – either vegan version or dairy.

TIP:  Always add a teaspoon or two of salt to the water before boiling the pasta.

Frequently Asked Questions

Carrots are not a common ingredient in pasta sauces. Can you explain how the carrots contribute to the flavour and texture of this dish?

The addition of carrots to this pasta sauce brings a delightful and unexpected element to the dish. Carrots provide a subtle sweetness that balances the savory and spicy flavours in the sauce. When ribboned or julienned, carrots also add a pleasant texture, offering a slight crunch that contrasts beautifully with the softness of the pasta. The carrots' natural sweetness complements the other ingredients, creating a well-rounded flavour profile that is both unique and delicious.

This recipe includes white wine. How does the white wine enhance the flavour of the sauce, and can you suggest any alternatives for those who prefer not to use alcohol?

White wine plays a crucial role in enhancing the flavour of this sauce. When added to the sautéed garlic, carrots, and zucchini, it helps deglaze the pan, releasing flavourful compounds and aromatics that have developed during cooking. This process not only adds depth to the sauce but also contributes a subtle acidity and complexity to the overall taste. For those who prefer not to use alcohol, a suitable alternative is to replace the white wine with vegetable broth or water. While the flavour profile may differ slightly, it will still result in a delicious and aromatic sauce.

The recipe suggests using breadcrumbs as a topping. Can you describe the role of breadcrumbs in this dish, and are there any specific types of breadcrumbs recommended?

Breadcrumbs serve as a delightful and textural topping for this dish. When toasted, they add a satisfying crunch that contrasts with the soft pasta and tender vegetables. Breadcrumbs also absorb some of the flavours from the sauce, making each bite more flavourful. While you can use various types of breadcrumbs, fresh breadcrumbs or panko breadcrumbs are often recommended for a crispier and more rustic texture. You can toast them in a dry skillet or oven until they become golden brown before sprinkling them over the pasta.

Can you suggest any optional garnishes or additional seasonings that would pair well with "Spaghetti alla Fi Fi"?

"Spaghetti alla Fi Fi" is a flavourful dish on its own, but you can enhance its presentation and taste with some optional garnishes and seasonings. Freshly chopped herbs such as basil or parsley can provide a burst of freshness and a pop of colour. If you enjoy extra heat, you can garnish with additional chili flakes or finely chopped fresh chili. A drizzle of extra virgin olive oil just before serving can add a fruity and rich finish. Feel free to experiment with these garnishes to customize the dish to your taste preferences.