May 22, 2015

Pasta with Roasted Bell Pepper & Cilantro "Vegan" Sauce

Do you like roasted red bell pepper? Then, you should try this creamy, luscious, flavorful sauce - a great way to jazz up your pasta dish and to make use of this season of vegetable bounty. Would you believe if I told you that the sauce uses only "three" ingredients - bell pepper, tomatoes, cilantro - can't get any simpler, can it?! Trust me, this is such an easy, straightforward "VEGAN" sauce that you can put up in very less time.

Bell peppers, tomatoes and cilantro - I love the fact how flavors are clean and fresh. But if you fancy, you could also add garlic or a touch of crushed red pepper. The sauce is little watery to sauce standards, but works perfectly fine for pasta. While the sauce is subtly sweet from red bell peppers, cilantro adds a burst of flavor and freshness. The sauce stores well in the refrigerator for upto 3 days (which I have tried) or maybe a day more or two.

I wanted to add some veggies to the pasta dish and perk up its health factor. So, julienned a couple of small carrots, thinly sliced a handful of beans and used about 1/8 cup of frozen peas. Just feel free to include other vegetables of your choice. I stir-fried vegetables briskly on high heat, for it added a nice crunchy texture to the pasta dish.

Basic Info
Complexity - Medium
Prep time - 15 mins
Cook time - 15 mins
Serves - 2

150 gms rotini Pasta (or any type that you like)

2 medium "red" Bell pepper
2 ripe Roma tomatoes
1/8 cup packed chopped Cilantro

2 Garlic

1 cup mixed Vegetables (I used a mix of julienned carrots, julienned beans and frozen peas)

1 tbsp Olive oil
Salt & pepper to taste
Chopped cilantro for garnish

Roast red bell pepper on stove-top until the sides are completely charred. After it cools, peel off the outer skin and roughly chop the bell pepper.

Bring a pot of water to a rolling boil. Use a sharp knife and mark "X" on the bottom of the tomatoes (opposite to the stem side). Gently place tomatoes into the boiling water with the "X" mark facing up. Boil the tomatoes for about 20-25 secs or until the "X" mark starts to split. Remove the tomatoes immediately from the boiling water and wash it under cold running tap water. Alternatively, you could also place tomatoes into a bowl of ice water and cool them off. Now, if you try pulling the skin out at the "X" mark, the skin would easily come off. Roughly chop and let it cool.

Use a mixer to grind roasted bell pepper, blanched tomatoes and cilantro into sauce consistency.

Meanwhile, cook pasta as per package instructions.

Heat olive oil in a large pan. When hot, fry garlic until golden brown and fragrant. At this point, you could either remove the roasted garlic or leave it, whichever you want. Crank up the heat and add vegetables & salt (as needed for the vegetables). Stir-fry the vegetables quickly in hot oil until cooked, yet crunchy. Next, add 1/4 - 1/2 cup of bell pepper sauce, required salt and stir for couple of mins. Finally, add cooked pasta and give everything a good mix.

Garnish with more chopped cilantro, serve hot & enjoy!

No comments :

Post a Comment