Here’s a super fresh, super simple, super tasty sauce that whips up in your food processor in no time. Roasted red pepper pasta and vegetable sauce is great hot or cold. Toss with any favorite pasta or sauteed vegetables.
The only part of this recipe that requires a bit of work, and it’s only a bit, is charring the peppers and then removing the skins. My tip here is to let them get as black and bubbly as possible. The more the skin bubbles, the less work you have to do to peel them. While they’re under the broiler, just when you think they’re black enough to take out, leave them in the oven for a few minutes more.
After the skins have been peeled and sliced, they’re ready for the food processor or blender. I like to leave a little of the char on before processing for added flavor.
Pureed with garlic and a healthy dose of olive oil, this is one super fresh, versatile sauce. Don’t let the simple list of ingredients fool you, this baby is full of complex flavor. Great with any kind of pasta, or toss with your favorite steamed or roasted vegetables. The sauce even doubles as a nice dip for crudites. Serve hot or cold. If serving cold, add one celery stalk before processing for a nice difference. That’s it! Enjoy.
- 3 large red bell peppers (capsicums)
- 3 or 4 large garlic cloves, depending on your love level of garlic
- ⅓ cup extra-virgin olive oil, regular or flavored
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley
- 1 pound dried spaghetti or any favorite pasta
- Optional: If you prefer, this can be served over any vegetables, especially steamed broccoli, cauliflower or zucchini
- Bring a large pot three-fourths full of salted water to a boil.
- Preheat the broiler on High and move rack to 6 inches under heating element. Cut the bell peppers in half lengthwise and remove the stems, seeds and ribs. Arrange cut sides down on a baking sheet, flattening the peppers so the entire outside is exposed to the broiler heat.
- Broil until the skins blacken and blister, about 10-15 minutes. The more black char and blistering that covers the surface, the easier the peppers are going to be to peel.
- Transfer peppers to a paper bag and let stand until the peppers cool and the skins loosen, about 15 minutes. (If you don't have a paper bag, place the peppers in a glass bowl and cover with a plate.)
- Using your fingers or a small knife, peel off the skins (If the entire skin won't come easily off, don't worry, just do your best). Cut the peppers lengthwise into strips. Set aside.
- In a blender or food processor, combine the roasted bell pepper strips, garlic, olive oil, and salt. Process until smooth. Cook's note: My Blendtec blender is a powerhouse and can process this puree completely smooth. My food processor yields a less smooth mixture and that is the consistency I prefer. (Photos are shown with the food processor-processed sauce.)
- Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook until al dente, according to instructions. Drain and transfer to a warmed serving bowl. Immediately pour the puree over the top and toss well. Sprinkle with the parsley and serve at once.