Have you ever been to a farmers’ market? Well sadly, in my lifetime, the only time I went to farmers’ markets was when I was inspecting them as a part of my stint as a health inspector.
So, when Barilla approached me and asked me to come up with a tasty, fresh, farmers’ market inspired dish using their Barilla PLUS pasta, I had a reason to finally hunt one down and go!
The colors of produce and flowers you see at these markets are amazing. I was originally drawn to the zucchini because everybody is complaining about having way too much zucchini. I decided that enough people were giving the zucchini attention right now, that it would be ok if I didn’t include it in this recipe.
My next thought was about bell peppers. Not the red ones, the green ones. I don’t think enough people give these guys the attention they deserve, so I plucked two large green peppers along with a few cute jalapenos and knew exactly what I wanted to do.
I didn’t feel the need to add any proteins like chicken or fish because the peppers along with the Barilla PLUS pasta give you all the balance you need in one dish! Barilla PLUS pastas are premium, multi-grain pasta rich in protein, omega-3 fatty acids, and fiber with the same great taste you expect from traditional pasta.
Think of this as Mexican-Italian fusion pasta! The spice from roasted peppers combined with the perfectly cooked pasta make for one inviting, healthy, farmers market inspired dish.
(See below for giveaway details)
Ingredients (Serves 4-6)
2 Large Green Bell Peppers
1 Box Barilla PLUS Spaghetti
Handful Fresh Cilantro (approx. ½ cup chopped)
1 Tablespoon Lime Juice
1 Clove of Garlic, roughly chopped
¼ Cup Parmesan, grated
1 Teaspoon Salt
½ Teaspoon Pepper
1 Teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
¼ Cup plus 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
Roast the green peppers and jalapeno over an open flame, either on the stove burner or over the grill. You want to char each side of the peppers. This should take about 10 to 15 minutes.
Once the peppers are charred and blackened all around, add them to a plastic storage bag. Seal the bag and let the peppers steam for about 20 minutes while you work on the rest of the prep.
Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil. Once the water comes to a boil, add the pasta and cook for about ten minutes. When the pasta is cooked, drain and set off to the side.
Once the peppers have steamed for the allotted time, remove them from the bag. Using a paper towel, start to brush the blackened charred skin off the peppers. Then remove the seeds and stems.
Roughly chop all the peppers and add them to a food processor along with the cilantro, lime juice, garlic, parmesan, salt, pepper, crushed red pepper flakes, and olive oil. Puree the pesto for about a minute until it starts to flow easily through the food processor.
When ready to serve, add about two tablespoons of sauce to a serving of the warm Barilla PLUS spaghetti and mix together.
If you are making this for a large crowd, you can also toss the pasta, pesto, and a ladle-full of pasta water together in a large skillet and heat over warm until all the pasta is dished out.
The pasta and pesto last under refrigeration in an air-tight container for up to five days… but I don’t think you will even have leftovers. Trust me! If you are looking for a good protein to go with this dish, try my Blackened Chicken.
Now on to the giveaway!!!!
Lucky for all you Sarcastic Cooking readers the nice people of Barilla gave me two boxes of Barilla PLUS pasta along with a $25.00 Visa gift card, so you can either make this wonderful meal or come up with your own healthy and farmer’s market inspired dish. One or two nights of not having to worry about what’s for dinner sounds pretty awesome to me!
Here is how to enter:
You must be a U.S. resident.
Comment on this post and tell me what farmer’s market inspired dish you would make using Barilla PLUS.
For extra chances to win:
If you are on twitter, tweet the following: “I just entered to win a $25 Visa gift card and pasta from @BarillaUS and @sarcasticcook!” Then leave a separate comment saying you tweeted about the giveaway.
Follow @sarcasticcook on Twitter and then leave a separate comment below stating you did so.
Like Sarcastic Cooking on Facebook and then leave a separate comment below saying you liked my Facebook page.
If you are on Pinterest, pin a picture from this post with the caption, “Roasted Pepper Pesto and a Barilla PLUS Giveaway” and then leave a separate comment below stating you did so.
The giveaway will be open until midnight on August 17th, 2012. After that time a winner will be drawn at random and notified via email. Make sure you leave the best email where you can be contacted.