Real Food for Real Life

Thursday, August 18, 2011

A different twist on an old standby...

Bell Pepper Puttanesca with turkey Italian sausage
and whole grain penne

Now to keep up with the bell pepper theme of the last post.  On another recent occasion of bell pepper bargains, I decided to make one of my pantry favorites, substituting the fresh red bell peppers for the canned, diced tomatoes I would normally use.  I love puttanesca, not only for its ease of preparation, but for the savory, spicy, and salty flavors that suit me so well.  This recipe makes a lot, so it's perfect for freezing half for a later, hectic, day.

Red Pepper Puttanesca

2oz. can anchovy fillets, in oil
6 red bell peppers, seeded and diced fairly small
6 cloves garlic, minced (2 tbs.)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 finger pinch of coarse salt and a generous grinding of black pepper
1/2 to 1 tsp. crushed red papper flakes
6oz. can tomato paste
1 1/2 to 2 cups dry white wine
1/2 of a 2oz. jar of capers, drained
1 heaping cup pitted kalamata olives, quartered lengthwise

The anchovies break up quite easily.
In a fairly large nonstick pan, warm the olive oil with the anchovies and their oil over medium heat until they break apart (this doesn't take long if you assist with a wooded spoon).  Add the garlic and bell peepers and continue to saute until tender.  Season with the salt, pepper and pepper flakes, stir in the tomato paste and cook a few minutes, or until the paste just starts to darken.  Add the white wine to achieve the desired consistency and bring to a boil before adding the capers and olives; heat through and taste for seasonings before serving.  Enjoy.

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