simple & spicy pasta sauce

red pepper & tomato sauce with chilli

9th September 2009

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Cherry tomatoes, green and red capsicum and red chillies are what is abundant in my garden at the moment, so when stuck for a quick dinner this was a welcome inspiration.  The recipe was inspired by a wonderful cookbook that Donna gave for me for my birthday called ITALIAN KITCHEN by Maxine Clark.  I cook with chillies often, but mostly I keep them whole and safely intact…that is until today.  This recipe wanted them halved and deseeded!  Now I was under the impression that if you took out the seeds, out goes the fiery heat, well, this is not the case as I found out the hard way, or at least not with these garden chillies.  And having undertaken this with my fingers, they are still a little warm and fuzzy this morning.  So what I had to do after chopping the deseeded chillies and adding them to the sauteing capsicum, was to fish them all out again.  Having successfully recovered 90 percent, the sauce was still fiery, but pretty amazing as well.  So when cooking this, you will have to use your own judgement and knowledge of the chillis available and your limitation of fiery spice.

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fiery red pepper sauce

Serves 2

ingredients

1 sweet red pepper (capsicum)

1 large fresh red chilli, halved and deseeded

4 Tbsp  extra virgin olive oil

15 cherry tomatoes (or two ripe big tomatoes)

2 Tbsp freshly chopped basil

1 tsp jaggery/sugar

sea salt and freshly ground pepper

a handful of green olives (deseeded)

freshly grated parmesan cheese

preparation 

1.  Dice the pepper (capsicum) into medium pieces and finely chop the chillies (be careful and use your judgement as noted above).

2.  Heat the olive oil in a pan and add the chillies and peppers, cook slowly for 20 mins or until really soft.

3.  Meanwhile, dunk the tomatoes in boiling water for 10 seconds, slip off the skins, and chop the flesh coarsely.

4.  Add the tomatoes, jaggery/sugar and season with salt and pepper – half cover and simmer gently for 10 minutes until well reduced and soft and thick.

5.  Stir in the fresh basil and toss with your chosen cooked pasta.  Throw in a handful of roughly chopped green olives and parmesan cheese.

Enjoy!

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