Friday, 20 July 2012

Mental Pasta Sauce

Last night I raked through the fridge and came across three lightly wrinkled sweet red peppers. They weren't useful as a veg anymore but fine for use in a soup or sauce. So I gathered a few more items, all of them fresh, I hasten to add, and set about making a pasta sauce. If you don't like anchovies, use capers or some chopped olives instead. If you don't like either of these ingredients, just season the sauce with a little salt.

When we were eating I asked my other half: "So, what do you think?" The answer was "Mental!"

1 red onion
1 whole bulb garlic
1 small red chilli, chopped
3 sweet red peppers
1 courgette
a few good glugs of olive oil
1 tin of anchovies in olive oil
a few sprigs of fresh oregano
freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp sweet Hungarian paprika
1 tin tomatoes in thick sauce
150-175 ml red wine
freshly grated parmesan
fresh rocket

1. Chop all the ingredients into fairly small bits. Pick the leaves off the oregano and chop them finely. You can leave the anchovies whole as they disolve in the hot oil. Use the oil from the can, too, for a more intense flavour.

2. Heat the oil in a heavy saucepan and add all the ingredients apart from the wine, tomatoes and seasoning. Sauté over a medium heat until the veg are starting to brown stirring occasionally to prevent them from sticking.

3. Season with black pepper. Add the wine, tomatoes and paprika. Bring to the boil. Then reduce the heat and simmer for at least 30 minutes. The longer you can leave it the better. My sauce bubbled away for about 2 hours and tasted, well, mental ;)

4. Before serving, lightly blend the sauce. Serve with pasta topped with freshly grated parmesan and rocket leaves.

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