Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Pasta with roasted peppers and hazelnuts

I'm back! And after several weeks of traveling I was looking for an interesting but quick dinner recipe I could make, and came across this recipe in "The great vegetarian cookbook" (which I told you about in an earlier post).

The original recipe calls for roasting the peppers for 30 minutes and then marinating them for an hour or two, but I was in a hurry, so I put the peppers under my broiler to roast them quickly, and only marinated them for the time it took to cook the pasta. The longer roasting and marinating will likely result in better flavor, but it was still delicious this way, so do as you will.

Pasta with Roasted Peppers and Hazelnuts

Ingredients (for 4-6 portions): 

- 2 large peppers (for the best visual effect, mix one red and one yellow, but if you only have one color, that's fine).
- a little olive oil to drizzle
- 3 tbsp balsamic vinegar (and if you enjoy a stronger vinegary flavor, I would keep a bit more on hand to add at the end).
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 3 cloves of garlic, crushed or minced
- 1 mild chili or jalapeno, finely chopped
- 1 pack (500 grams/1 lb) pasta. I used tagliatelle, but the original recipe calls for linguine.
- 50 grams hazelnuts, chopped.
- a few handfuls of coriander, chopped (optional)
- some grated parmesan or pecorino (optional)


1. Cut the peppers into quarters, de-seed and slice into thin strips. Place the strips in a roasting pan, drizzle a bit of olive oil (optional) and either roast at 200C/400F for 30 minutes or place under a broiler until the skins begin to blister.

2. While the peppers are roasting, place the hazelnuts in a small pan on low heat and roast until lightly brown.  In a container mix the vinegar, olive oil, garlic and chili together.

3. When the peppers are ready, put them in the vinegar-oil mixture and marinate at least until the pasta cooks, or for an hour or two.

4. Cook pasta according to instructions until al dente. Drain, and then toss the pasta with the peppers and sauce (I found it easiest to return the pasta to the cooking pot and do it there). Season with salt and toss in the hazelnuts, coriander and grated cheese. If you wish, drizzle a bit more balsamic vinegar to increase the flavors. Serve immediately.

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