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Spicy Roasted Pepper Pasta
SCRAPS #5: another carb-forward weeknight dinner idea
Another week, another weeknight recipe idea: this time, I’m sharing a saucy, spicy roasted pepper pasta with you. It’s quick, easy and delicious. The final result is quite reminiscent of pasta a la vodka.
Unfortunately, this recipe doesn’t come with an audio note, mainly because I couldn’t find the time to record one, but also because I didn’t have a heart-warming story to tie this recipe to to. It’s one of those ideas that came to life because I had to use up some scraps from my fridge. How on brand with this newsletter?! A majority of my recipes are inspired and influenced by ingredients going bad in my pantry. This time, it was roasted peppers!
I’m not sure what came over me, but after a quick grocery run, I ended up with a bunch of roasted pepper jars in my fridge. I tossed them in salads, pizzas, dips, marinades, but it felt like the supply was never ending. That’s when I decided to create this pasta sauce. I haven’t made anything like it before, and the final result was exciting enough to share it on here. I hope this becomes a staple on your weekly menu!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
4 servings pasta of choice
2 shallots, chopped
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 teaspoon chile flakes
1/4 teaspoon cayenne, optional
1 teaspoon black peppercorns, roughly crushed
4 anchovies, optional
1 handful fresh basil
1 x 16 oz (454 g) jar of roasted red peppers, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup heavy cream
2/3 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese, optional
1/4 cup pasta water, plus more as needed
Extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt, to taste
shallots: yellow or red onion
anchovies: a splash of soy sauce, or skip adding them
fresh basil: 2 teaspoons dried basil
heavy cream: full-fat coconut milk, non-dairy milk or 1/3 cup pasta water
Parmesan cheese: nutritional yeast, or just skip adding cheese
extra-virgin olive oil: any other oil of choice (avocado, grape seed, etc.)
Heat 3 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil in a pan on medium heat. Sauté the shallots for 4 minutes, mixing them with a wooden spoon or spatula, until translucent and soft. Toss in the anchovies, garlic, cayenne, black pepper, chile flakes and cook for 2 minutes.
Add the basil, roasted pepper and cook for 3 minutes, mixing occasionally. Add everything to a blender, or food processor, then set it aside to cool for a few minutes. Pour over 1/2 cup heavy cream and 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil.
In the meantime, prepare a pot of boiling hot water for the pasta. Season with a big pinch of salt and boil the pasta 4 minutes less than what the instructions on the packaging call for.
Carefully blend the red pepper sauce until smooth. If you are using a regular blender, make sure to remove the plug from the top of the lid to allow the steam to escape.
Pour the red pepper sauce back in the pan, and simmer for 1 to 2 minutes. Add the grated Parmesan cheese, 1/4 cup pasta water, and undercooked pasta.
Simmer the pasta for 2 to 3 minutes, then season with more salt to taste.
Serve right away.