Poh’s Handmade Semolina Cavatelli

Italy might be off the cards this year but homemade pasta doesn’t have to be.  From rolling the dough to blending up a no-cook sauce with just a few ingredients, Poh’s Homemade Cavatelli pasta in a no-cook sauce is guaranteed to hit the spot. Best of all, it’s made with semolina flour making it egg-free and vegan friendly. This dish is guaranteed to be a favourite!


Serves 4

Prep 30 mins. Cooking time 10 mins
Difficulty: Simple




  • 400g fine semolina flour
  • Enough warm water to knead into a soft pliable dough – if in doubt add more rather than less water, and if it’s too sticky, add some semolina

No-Cook Tomato Sauce

  • 1 punnet (250-300g) ripe cherry tomatoes
  • 3-4 Tbs olive oil
  • A handful of picked basil leaves
  • A handful of raw almonds (about 1/3-1/2 cup)
  • Salt & pepper to taste


  • A handful of torn basil leaves OR roughly chopped Italian parsley
  • Finely grated Pecorino OR Parmesan cheese


  1. For the cavatelli.  Place the semolina in a medium bowl and add enough warm water to gather the contents into a soft pliable dough. Err on the side of it looking wetter than is needed at the beginning as the semolina is very thirsty and will soak it up, but if needed, it’s easy to add more semolina. Knead enthusiastically for about 5 minutes, then cover with cling film and rest for about 20 minutes.
  2. For the no-cook tomato sauce. Meanwhile, place all the No-Cook Tomato Sauce ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Taste and season with more salt and pepper if needed. Set aside.
  3. To make the cavatelli, roll a golfball-sized chunk of semolina dough into a 1cm diameter thick noodle. Cut into 2cm pieces, then dust well with plenty of flour.  Position a sushi mat with its lines running vertically. Place the long side of a piece of the cut pasta running across the grain of the sushi mat, then holding the pastry scraper at about a 40º angle,  and holding the mat with your non-dominant hand, press and drag against the pasta starting from one edge to the other – so it rolls into a something that resembles a ridged log. Repeat until all the pasta is made.
  4. Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil (1L water:1 tsp salt), then boil the pasta until it floats to the surface. Scoop the pasta out and toss in a mixing bowl with enough of the sauce to coat each piece well. Garnish with basil or parsley and cheese.



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