Spaghetti with Marmite

Wednesday 27 October 2010

Love it or loathe it, you have to admit that Marmite really gets people talking. There is even a dedicated Fan Club for it online.

A thick and sticky dark brown paste with a distinctly powerful taste which is salty and savoury with umami qualities, it is a yeast extract, which is a by product of beer brewing.

Todd is from the Love it group. One of his favourite snacks is to smear it on buttered bread . . . ugh . . . I won't even let him near me when he's eaten it . . . I just can't stand the smell . . .

I do like Twigletts though, which have a distinct marmite kind of taste . . . so while I don't necessarily like it a lot . . . I don't actually loathe it either.

In Nigella's newest cookbook, Kitchen, recipes from the heart of the home, she has a recipe for Marite with Spaghetti and I have to admit I was intrigued from minute I saw it . . . and then when I watched her cook it on the telly, I was intrigued even more.

This was something I wanted to try.

I made it today and it is one of the easiest recipes ever . . . in fact, I'm not even sure that you could really call it a recipe . . . Nigella claims that children love it. Not having any children in my home, I'll just have to take her word on that.

However, having made it I'd have to say that it's not too bad! I actually found it a bit on the bland side. She did suggest that you could add more marmite to taste . . . but I was afraid to put in too much, coz I'm not really a lover of it . . .

I did find that adding a healthy grinding of black pepper really added some zip . . . and then I got to thinking . . . you know what happens then.

I spied a jar of Caramelized Onion Chutney on the countertop and I thought why the heck not! I added a healthy dessertspoonful of the stuff and WOWOW!

This was no longer just so/so . . . it was fantastic!!

If you want so/so . . . follow the recipe as per Nigella . . . but . . . if you want a dish that is not only easy, but gorgously tasty, follow my lead and add some Caramelized Onion Chutney! (I just can't leave well enough alone can I!!)

*Spaghetti with Marmite*
Serves 4 to 6
Printable Recipe

Surprisingly good.

375g dry spaghetti (about 3/4 of a pound)
50g unsalted butter (about 3 1/2 TBS)
1 tsp Marmite, or more to taste
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese to taste
freshly ground black pepper

Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil. Add the spaghetti and cook, according to the package directions.

About five minutes before the pasta is cooked, melt the butter in a small saucepan. Add the marmite and about 1 TBS of the pasta cooking water. Whisk to amalgamate and thorougly dissolve the marmite. Reserve about 1/2 cup of the pasta water and then drain the pasta completely. Return to the pot and then pour the marmite mixture over top and mix together, adding a bit of the reserved pasta water if necesssary. Serve with plenty of finely grated Parmesan Cheese and a grinding of pepper.

Note - Todd, of course, did NOT imbibe . . . because, whilst he loves Marmite . . . he absolutely loathes Spaghetti!


  1. That sounds very interesting, I doubt that i will try it but I do like what you did to it! :D

  2. WOW... I just treated myself to Nigella's new book, and I just LOVE it! Love all her books really, she's got such great ways with food. But this Spaghetti with Marmite intrigues, and I think we'd love it. Can't get Marmite here, and not back home in the US either, always seemed a very English thing! And really like your addition of the chutney... mmm... :o) Happy Day, dear friend--LOVE YOU LOTS ((BIG HUGS))

  3. This is the second time in a week I've heard about this recipe. Once from a friend in Nottingham and now here and both of you gave positive reviews. I am also intrigued. Now I just have to find Marmite in Denver, Colorado. Wish me luck!

  4. An Australian friend brought us Marmite once and i guess I'm from the "loathe it" group. I do love cooking Nigella's recipes though!

  5. I might try the recipe with Vegemite. This Aussie dislikes all others.

    Marie I am most interested in the chutney though. Is it your own?

  6. My mum tells me I was a marmite baby and I still love it. You can get marmite mini breadsticks which I love to eat as a snack. It is also delicious on a cheese sandwich

  7. I have been a lurker of your site for quite some time, but after seeing this recipe I had to comment. I am a Brit living in Canada and I LOVE marmite!
    I will definitely be trying this recipe, it sounds very interesting.

  8. You may have fooled everyone else Marie Alice but you cannot fool me. You used that caramelized onion chutney to hide the (blehhhh) Marmite taste.

    The spaghetti dish sounds like a bedtime snack to me. You did know a bit of carbohydrate at bedtime helps you sleep better? Snores! here I come.



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