Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Roasted red pepper pesto pasta with olives and feta

I saw this recipe this afternoon and knew I had to make it for dinner!  I keep trying to quit eating carbs, but it just doesn't tend to work out.  A good recipe makes it totally worth needing to run a little more often!

This recipe is actually a series of 3 recipes from Closet Cooking.
 The first is recipe is really just a set of instructions of how to roast peppers when you don't have a grill or gas stove.  Instead, you roast them in the oven. Super easy!

The next recipe is a greek-style sundried tomato pesto.  Check out the adorable measuring spoons I got for Christmas!
 The peso is simple.  You just throw everything in the food processor and blend away!

The final result is a lovely smooth sauce for the pasta!

You can use any pasta you like.  I'm a big coupon user and I got a great deal on mini versions of classic pasta shapes from Barilla.  They're an awesome shape.

Finally, I mixed the pesto into the pasta with feta and kalamata olives.  The olive bar at Giant only had pitted kalamata olives - it was a pain to depit them all.  I recommend searching for the pitted kind.

The final result was pretty tasty.  I probably wouldn't make it again, but a recipe has to be SUPER good for me to want to make it again.  I'd give this about a 3 out of 5.

Here are the recipes from Closet Cooking:

How to Roast Red Peppers

(makes 1 roasted red pepper)
Printable Recipe

red peppers

1. Cut the red peppers in half, remove the stem and seeds.
2. Place the red peppers on a baking sheet with the cut side facing down.
3. Preheat the oven to 450F and then change it to broil.
4. Place the baking sheet on the top shelf in the oven and broil until the outer layer of the skin has blackened, about 10-20 minutes.
5. Place the peppers in a zip-lock bag or other sealable container, seal and let them cool until you can handle them, about 20 minutes.
6. Remove the skins from the peppers. The skins should easily "pinch" off.

Greek Style Roasted Red Pepper Pesto

(makes 1/2 cup)
Printable Recipe

2 large roasted red peppers
1 tablespoons fresh oregano (optional)
2 cloves garlic (chopped)
2 tablespoons pine nuts (toasted)
2 tablespoons feta (crumbled)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper to taste

1. Place everything into a food processor and puree.

Roasted Red Pepper Pesto Pasta with Feta and Kalamata Olives

(makes 4 servings)
Printable Recipe

1 pound pasta (I used whole wheat penne)
1/2 cup greek style roasted red pepper pesto
1/4 cup kalamata olives (pitted and coarsely chopped)
1 handful parsley (chopped)
1/2 cup feta (crumbled)

1. Cook the pasta as directed on the package.
2. Drain the pasta reserving 1/4 cup of the pasta water.
3. Toss the pasta with the pesto, pasta water, olives and parsley.
4. Serve garnished with crumbled feta.

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