Posted in dry heat, wet heat

Carrot and bell pepper pasta

After a real Italian mom taught me how to make tomato sauce, I realized I can make a million variations on it by putting in whatever vegetables (especially those fruits that we consider vegetables) I have on hand.  This time I had carrots and a purple bell pepper from my farmshare.  The purple pepper (since the farmshare does measure some things in pecks and I do pick some of the stuff there myself, I really wish I could say I picked a peck of them) turned dark green when it cooked, just like the purple beans (I’d call them green beans, but…they’re not) that we get there do.  If anyone knows what pigments are involved and what they’re sensitive to, I’d love to know!  Anyway, I sauteed my veggies with a little shallot and olive oil, added my canned diced tomatoes and some wine, simmered that while I cooked my pasta, and voila, or rather, ecco.  I grated some parmesan cheese on top, of course.  The moral of the story is: don’t be afraid of homemade sauce!  You can use canned tomatoes (in fact, I prefer them, because they don’t get mushy), and you don’t have to simmer it all day long.  I start heating the pasta water at the same time as I start the sauce, and I finish the sauce at about the same time the pasta is finished.  Just remember that it’s better for your sauce to have to wait for your pasta than for your pasta to have to wait for your sauce, since sauceless pasta will start to dry out.

Start a sauce by sauteing aromatics in olive oil.
I always start a sauce by sauteing aromatics in olive oil.
I decided to use penne for a change.  Normally I'm a spaghetti gal.
I decided to use penne for a change. Normally I'm a spaghetti gal.
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