There is something about this dish that will forever invoke pure nostalgia for me. As I mentioned when I posted this a few years ago on A Cozy Kitchen, this is one of the first dishes I learned to cook while working as a prep cook in high school at Saluda Grade Cafe. That is, it was one of the first things I could prepare that didn’t involve reading the directions on the back of a box. It was the dish that opened my eyes to the fact that all you need to make a delicious meal is a few simple, but quality, ingredients cooked in just the right way to make them sing on the plate. The roasted red peppers and garlic sizzling in olive oil create a subtle but heavenly sauce to toss the pasta in, and when combined with some fresh basil and parmesan cheese it is impossible not to just do a face plant in the bowl.
This recipe has made regular appearances in every kitchen I’ve ever had – in my college apartment, my first home in LA and the apartment that Chase and I share now. The fact that the ingredients are cheap and easy to keep on hand, and when paired with a glass of wine and side salad can become and elegant meal, probably means it’ll be around for quite a while longer.
Adapted from Kaye Vasquez
Want to make this dish uber healthy? Just use whole-wheat pasta and this is a guilt-free meal. Also, if you don’t have penne on hand, then any short pasta will work.
1lb penne pasta
2 tablespoons olive oil
5 oz roasted red peppers (about 2 full peppers), sliced or julienned
2-3 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped or chiffonade
1 cup grated parmesan cheese
Salt & Fresh cracked pepper
Cook the pasta in boiling water, drain and set aside.
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet Add the red peppers and garlic and saute over medium heat for 3-5 minutes. Add in the pasta and basil and toss in the red-pepper infused oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Serve topped with parmesan cheese.