Our Eat with Team England series this week has an authentic Italian pasta dish courtesy of Maria Tsaptsinos.

Maria had been living and playing in Italy for two years prior to the lockdown and has had plenty of opportunity to cook and eat Italian cuisine.

She has gone for a simple pomodoro pasta, a carbohydrate-rich meal which helps to fuel her training.

Maria, national women’s singles champion in 2019 and part of the England team which won bronze at the 2018 Commonwealth Games, said:

I’ve been living in Italy for two years and this is my favourite simple, authentic Italian dish which will keep you energised throughout the day when playing table tennis.


  • 1 onion
  • 4 ripe, skinned tomatoes
  • Pasta of your choice
  • Fresh basil
  • Oil


  • Dice the onions and tomatoes
  • Fry the onions in the oil for about two minutes, then add the tomatoes and cover. Cook over a low to medium heat for around 25-30 minutes
  • About halfway through, add the basil to the sauce. At the same time, put on your pasta and boil for around 10 minutes
  • Add the pasta to the sauce and mix together. Season if required and serve immediately with a side of green vegetables