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Flavorful Fridays: Roasted Red and Yellow Pepper Pasta

March 5, 2010

Last night, I decided to make a lighter dinner. Many of our dinners recently have been pretty heavy, rich meals. While we both enjoy these hunker-down, winter-inspired meals, I thought it might be better for both of us to partake in a healthier meal, especially since yesterday was such a beautiful and (relatively) warm day. Instead of running through my easy stand-bys, I chose to hunt through the treasures of Marcella Hazan’s cookbook, Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking. And wouldn’t you know it, one of the first recipes I looked at was exactly what I was hoping for!

I cannot recall any time that I’ve had peppers and basil together in the same dish, but I love both ingredients so I figured we couldn’t really go wrong with this recipe. This is a Neapolitan dish (which might explain why I haven’t experienced this before). The roasted peppers were a welcome aroma to Will arriving home, and the yummy noises that followed his first few bites convinced me that this is a keeper. The pasta was sweet but not too sweet; it was light and the peppers had been cooked to be tender but not mushy. This is a beautiful and tasty dish–good for dinner for two or to enjoy with company.

Roasted Red and Yellow Pepper Sauce with Garlic and Basil

From Marcella Hazan’s Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking

Peeled peppers


3 meaty bell peppers, some red, some yellow

16 to 20 fresh basil leaves, torn into smaller pieces

2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

4 garlic cloves, peeled


2 Tablespoons butter

2/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan

1 pound pasta, such as rigatoni or penne


Wash the peppers in cold water. Cut them lengthwise along their crevices. Scoop away and discard their seeds and pulpy core. Peel the peppers, using a swiveling-blade peeler. Cut the peppers lengthwise into 1/2-inch broad strips, then shorten the strips, cutting them into two.

Choose a saute pan that can accommodate all the peppers without crowding them. Put in the olive oil and the garlic cloves, and turn on heat to medium high. Cook and stir the garlic until it becomes colored a light nut brown, then remove and discard.

Put the peppers in the pan, and continue to cook at a lively heat for another 15 minutes, stirring frequently. The peppers are done when they are tender, but not mushy. Add an adequate amount of salt, stir, and take off heat.

When you are nearly ready to drain and toss the pasta, melt the butter in a small saucepan at a low heat. It should be just runny, not sizzling.

Toss the cooked, drained pasta with the contents of the saute pan, then add the melted butter, the grated Parmesan, and the basil and toss thoroughly once more. Serve at once.

* Note: I poured the drained, cooked pasta into the saute pant and added 1 Tablespoon of butter (softened) to the pasta and pepper mixture before adding the Parmesan and basil.

One Comment leave one →
  1. September 29, 2014 9:53 am

    Thank u I am going to try it tonite… met someone in the Grocery Store got talking & she teaches a class & was going to teach this tonite…. I came home & went on line to find this …l will let u know our results… Anne C from Greenwich, CT

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