Don’t you just love a good pasta dish?
Good ol’ spag bol certainly has it’s uses as one of those easy dishes that everyone loves (in fact, spag bol is still one of my favourites that I make at least every couple of weeks), but sometimes it’s nice just to shake things up a little.
Now this dish has everything going for it when you need to get something on the table quick, but you fancy something a bit different and special:
- Penne pasta
smothered in a rich and spicy arrabiata sauce
Gooey pieces of melty mozzarella
Chunks of spicy chorizo
Bell pepper slices, grilled/broiled until smoky and charred
1 red bell pepper
1 yellow bell pepper
400 g dried penne pasta (use gluten free if required)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 white or brown onion (peeled and chopped)
200 g chorizo, sliced (usually gluten free, but check if required)
2 cloves garlic (peeled and minced)
1 tbsp tomato puree
400 g chopped tomatoes
1 tsp dried thyme – or 3 stalks of fresh thyme
1 tsp heaped of dried chilli flakes (you can add more or less depending on how much you like chillies)
1 tsp sugar
3 tbsp finely grated parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp Freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp chopped fresh chives
Place the two whole bell peppers under the grill/broiler and grill until blackened and charred all over. Turn during grilling to ensure all the sides get done. They should be blackened in about 10-12 minutes. Once done, wrap in tin foil and allow to cool slightly in the foil (this will make removing the skin easier).
Whilst the peppers are grilling you can cook the pasta and make the arrabiata sauce.
Heat a large pan of water for the pasta, and cook the penne as per the pack instructions.
In a large frying pan/skillet, heat the oil and add in the onion. Cook on a medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 2-3 minutes until the onions start to soften. Add in the chorizo, and cook for a further 3-4 minutes until the chorizo releases it’s oils and start to darken. Now stir in the garlic and tomato puree, cook for 1 minute, then stir in the canned tomatoes, thyme, dried chilli flakes and sugar. Bring it to a gentle bubble and allow to simmer for 10 minutes.
By now, the foil-wrapped peppers should have cooled a little. Place them on a chopping board, then remove and discard the charred skin. Slice up the peppers (discarding the seeds) and throw the chopped peppers into the arrabiata sauce.
Drain the pasta, once cooked, and pour the drained pasta into the arrabiata sauce. Stir together (I find it easier to use a spoon and a set of tongs for this) until the pasta is completely coated in the sauce. Stir in the mozzarella chunks, heat for a further minute and then turn off the heat.
Sprinkle the arrabiata with a little parmesan, freshly ground black pepper and some chopped chives. Serve straight from the pan.
Nutritional info is per serving.