I couldn’t wait to share my new favorite pasta dish with you. A few weeks back I had a friend staying with me for a few days. On Sunday night I served Pasta Peperonata for dinner and it was delicious.
Sunday night dinners are my favorite. There is something casual about dinners on Sunday night. The weekend is winding down and it is the perfect time to hang out with family and friends. Many years ago I lived in an apartment behind the beach house of a friend of mine. Many Sundays you would find us trying new recipes with a mix of friends from our church. Wine would be flowing, there would be great conversation and of course, great food.
For this Sunday night supper I tried a recipe I had had my eyes on for awhile. I have tried a few Jamie Oliver recipes and each of them have been very yummy. I love his school initiatives, changing the way school lunches are served and promoting growing your vegetables.
You slowly cook the peppers, onions and garlic to bring out the sweetness of each of them. When they are cooked the dish is finished off with the balsamic vinegar. The peperonata would be great served on toasted bread and goat cheese.
I added the mascarpone cheese and it added a creamy richness to the dish.
by Jamie Oliver
2 red peppers, deseeded and sliced
2 yellow peppers, deseeded and sliced
extra virgin olive oil
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 red onions, peeled and finely sliced
2 garlic cloves, peeled and grated
2 handfuls of fresh flat-leaf parsley, leaves finely chopped, stalks reserved
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar or balsamic vinegar
2 handfuls of grated Parmesan cheese
2 heaped tablespoons mascarpone cheese or crème Fraîche
1lb rigatoni, penne or spaghetti
Put all the peppers in a large frying pan over a medium heat with a little olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. Place a lid on, and cook slowly for 15 minutes until softened. Don’t rush this too much, as cooking the peppers slowly like this really helps to bring out the flavour. Add the onion and cook for a further 20 minutes. Then add the garlic and parsley stalks and toss around, keeping everything moving in the pan. Cook for about 3 minutes most. Have a little taste, and season with a bit more salt and pepper. Add the vinegar – it will sizzle away, so give everything a good toss. Then add one handful of the grated Parmesan and the mascarpone or crème fraîche if you are using it and turn the heat down to minimum while you cook the pasta.
Meanwhile put a large pot of salted water on to boil. Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook according to the packet instructions. When cooked, drain in a colander, reserving some of the cooking water. Put the peppers, pasta and parsley leaves into a large warmed bowl. Give them a good toss together, then add a little of the pasta cooking water and a few good lugs of extra virgin olive oil to coat the pasta nicely. Serve straight away sprinkled with the rest of the Parmesan.