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Posts Tagged ‘Peppers’

Pasta with red peppers and sausages

We love dishes like this! So cheap and easy yet tastes of Italian holidays. Try and find some good Italian sausages as they tend to be really well flavoured.

Wine Suggestion: the fresh and pure fruited Rocca delle Macie Chianti Vernaiolo was our successful match with this. With no oak this is a delicious expression of cherry fruited flavours that celebrates the freshness of the dish at the same time.

  • 1 small red onion, finely sliced
  • 3 red peppers, deseeded and cut into 2cm squares
  • 4 pork sausages – try and get your hands on some Italian ones if possible
  • 6 tbsp olive oil
  • a couple of pinches of salt and chilli flakes
  • 5 ripe tomatoes, peeled and roughly chopped (cover with hot water for a minute to make them easier to peel)
  • 400g pasta, we used rigatoni but use any short pasta variety
  • plenty of freshly grated Parmesan, to serve

Run a sharp knife down each sausage and remove the meat from inside the casing. Crumble roughly with your fingers to break it up a bit and set aside.

Over a medium-low heat, fry the onion in the olive oil with a small pinch of salt until soft but not browned. Add the chilli and sausage meat, crumbling it with your fingers, then fry, breaking the pieces up with the back of a wooden spoon until the meat is no longer pink. Add the peppers, another pinch of salt and cook, stirring every now and then, for another 10 minutes.

Add the tomatoes to the pan and cook for another 15 minutes or until the sauce is rich and thick and the peppers are very soft.

Meanwhile, cook the pasta in  boiling salty water until al dente. Warm a large bowl, then mix the cooked pasta with the sauce and the grated Parmesan before serving.

(Original recipe published in The Guardian 18th July 2017.)

 

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Makshi, stuffed peppers with beef & rice

This is delicious. You will need a very big pot and small peppers to fit them all in. Yet again Honey & Co have not let us down with this fab recipe.

Wine Suggestion: try not to drink too heavy a wine with this as it might fight with the spices and red pepper flavours. We found a northern Italian Pinot Nero from Alto Adige / Südtirol made by Cantina Colterenzio was a good match. It provided a delightful play of cherry fruit and earthiness while balancing the freshness with youthful acidity.

Makshi – stuffed peppers with beef & rice – serves 4

  • 8 small red peppers
  • 1 lemon, sliced
  • 1 tomato, sliced

FOR THE FILLING:

  • 1 large onion, finely diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 250g beef mince
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp ground allspice
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper
  • 90g basmati rice
  • 2 tomatoes, diced (about 200g)
  • 1 small bunch of parsley, chop the leaves and reserve the stalks

FOR THE COOKING LIQUOR:

  • 70g tomato purée
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled

Cut around the top of each pepper, about 1 cam below the stalk, and take the top section off but don’t throw it away. Remove the seeds and white membrane from the inside of the peppers.

Arrange the peppers upright in a pan that can hold them snugly so they don’t topple over. Push the lemon and tomato wedges in around them to hold them in place. Also add the reserved parsley stalks.

Fry the onion and garlic in the oil over a medium heat until softened, then add the beef mince, breaking it up with a wooden spoon until it has lost any pinkness and has gone crumbly. Add the salt and spices and mix well, then tip in the rice and fry for a minute. Add the diced tomato & chopped parsley. Take off the heat and mix well. Spoon this mixture into the peppers but don’t press it down too much as the rice will expand as it cooks.

Put the cooking liquor ingredients into a saucepan with 1 litre of water and bring to the boil. Pour the hot liquid over the pepper filled peppers, making sure some liquid gets into each one (we used a plastic funnel to do this). Put the pot containing the peppers over a high heat and bring to the boil, then immediately reduce the heat and cook for 30 minutes at a gentle simmer.

Check how much liquid is left in the pan (it should be about three-quarters full – if not top it up with more water). Baste the peppers with the cooking liquid and put the lid back on. Simmer for a further 20 minutes, then serve or keep for the following day (when they will taste even better). They reheat well in the microwave.

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Rigatoni Peperonata

A simple midweek pasta supper for using up those multi-pack peppers. It reminds us of summer and Italy.

Wine suggestion: a great match with Cabernet Franc. The bell pepper, inky and pencil shaving character really compliments the flavours in this simple dish. A favourite of our is the Ch du Hureau from Saumur. Their “Tuffe” a youthful Cab Franc is a gem that regularly makes its way onto our wine rack. If you want to stick with Italian a 100% Sangiovese would make an excellent choice too.

Pasta Peronata – serves 4 (easily halved)

  • 2 red peppers, sliced
  • 2 yellow peppers,  sliced
  • 2 red onions, finely sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, grated or crushed
  • 2 handfuls fresh flat-leaf parsley, leaves finely chopped and stalks reserved
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 2 handfuls grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 heaped tablespoons mascarpone cheese or crème fraîche (optional – we don’t usually add this unless we have some already)
  • 500g rigatoni or penne pasta

Put the peppers into a large frying pan over a medium heat with a little olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. Cover with a lid, and cook gently for about 15 minutes until softened. Add the onion and cook for a further 20 minutes. Then add the garlic and parsley stalks and cook, stirring, for about 3 minutes. Season to taste. Add the vinegar, then add a 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.

Cook the pasta according to the instructions on the pack. Reserve a little of the cooking water before draining. Toss the peppers, pasta & chopped parsley in a large warm bowl. Add a bit of the reserved pasta water and a splash of good olive oil to coat the pasta. Serve with the rest of the Parmesan.

(Original recipe by Jamie Oliver).

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Marinated Pepper Salad with Pecorino & Capers

This salad is really versatile and can be served on it’s own as a starter, with a good variety of barbecued meats like the sirloin steak we had here or grilled mushrooms. It has a great balance of earthiness, sweetness and a salty freshness from the peppers and capers which match the pecorino cheese really well.

Marinated Pepper Salad with Pecorino – serves 2 as a starter or more as a side

  • 1 red pepper, quartered
  • 1 yellow pepper, quartered
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp water
  • ½ tsp muscovado sugar
  • 2 thyme sprigs
  • 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
  • 10g flat-leaf parsley, leaves picked
  • 15g basil leaves
  • 30g watercress
  • 50g mature pecorino shaved
  • 1 tbsp capers, drained

Preheat the oven to 190ºC/Gas Mark 5.

Toss the peppers with 1 tbsp of the oil and a little salt. Scatter in a roasting tin and roast for 35 minutes, or until soft and starting to colour. Remove to a bowl and cover with cling film. Leave to cool, then peel and cut into thick strips.

Whisk together the marinade ingredients: 2 tbsp of the oil, the balsamic vinegar, water, sugar, thyme, garlic, and some salt and pepper. Pour this over the peppers and leave aside for at least an hour or overnight in the fridge.

When ready to serve, toss the herbs, watercress, drained peppers, pecorino and capers together. Add the last tbsp of olive oil and 1tbsp of the marinade. Season to taste.

(Original recipe from Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi, Ebury Press, 2010.)

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… it was. You know when you read a recipe and it looks tasty enough, but nothing special; good for a weeknight. Well this looked like that, and then had such great balance of flavours it had to make the blog. It did take longer than we expected, but the pizza-like aromas from the oven had us salivating and it was worth the wait. More like a veggie pasta bake than a frittata we reckon.

Easy oven frittata (serves 4, or less if you’re hungry)

  • 1/2 tsp oilve oil
  • 85g fusilli, macaroni or small pasta – we used conchigle
  • 1 bunch of scallions, chopped
  • 85g frozen peas
  • 85g frozen or tinned sweetcorn
  • 1 red pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 2 large eggs
  • 150ml milk
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 50g good Irish cheddar, grated (Bandon Vale worked well)
  • 2 tbsp parmesan, finely grated
  • a green salad to serve

Preheat oven to 190C / fan 170C and grease a 1.2 litre baking dish with olive oil

Cook the pasta in salted boiling water for 8 minutes. Add all the veg and cook for a further 2 minutes. Drain and tip into baking dish.

Beat together eggs, add thyme and milk and beat a little more. Mix in most of the two cheeses and some black pepper and a sprinkle of salt. Pour into the baking dish, stir, then scatter remaining cheeses on top.

Bake for 35 to 40 minutes until golden and set. Cool for a minute or two and serve with the salad leaves.

Surprisingly tasty and low fat too! What more could you ask for?

(Original recipe from BBC Good Food)

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