Spice up your pasta night with a delicious yet healthy vegetarian Arrabiata and Pesto Sauce Pasta. It may sound like a mouthful but this dish is perfect for a quick and simple dinner. With hardly any effort you can have a tasty plate of penne arrabbiata that’s loaded with veggies and a flavorful pesto sauce.
The word arrabbiata means “angry” in Italian. Why you may ask? The sauce is usually quite spicy compared to other Italian sauces. It takes less than 20 minutes to make it and you can adjust the heat to your taste. At home, everything is very customizable. If you are not much into spicy food then start with little crushed red pepper flakes. You may even substitute it with cayenne. Either way, this dish is a winner at the dinner table hearty, wholesome, and filled with goodness.
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- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 2 onions, finely chopped
- 2 carrots, finely chopped
- 2 celery sticks, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 2-4 red chillies, chopped
- 2 bay leaves 1 tsp sugar
- 1kg jam tomatoes, blanched and roughly chopped
- 5ml fresh oregano, chopped
- 5ml fresh basil, chopped
- Score your tomatoes at the bottom (cut a slight cross through the skins).
- Half fill a heavy-based saucepan with water, once water is boiling, add your tomatoes.
- The skins will peel away when they are ready, drain them and allow to cool slightly before peeling.
- Chop the tomatoes roughly Heat the oil in a pan and add the vegetables, chillies and bay leaf.
- Stir in the sugar with some salt.
- Gently cook for 1 15 mins until the veg is tender Stir in the tomatoes and 150ml water
- Simmer very gently for 30 mins until the sauce has reduced by two thirds and is very thick
- Stir occasionally, particularly towards the end of the cooking time, so that the sauce doesn’t catch on the bottom
- Pour the tomato sauce into your table blender and blend until smooth, add a splash of water if you prefer a thinner sauce
- Serve with penne pasta, basil pesto and parmesan cheese Chill or freeze another half in batches for later use
- Variation: you can add smoked paprika or more fresh chillies if you prefer a spicy sauce
- 60g sweet basil, washed and drained
- 50ml olive oil
- 15ml lemon juice
- 30ml pine nuts, toasted
- 15ml grated parmesan cheese
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Pour oil, lemon juice, garlic, pine nuts, parmesan and basil into the blender jug and blend until smooth.
- Use as a condiment for your Arrabiata pasta dish.
- Top with more basil and parmesan cheese.
- 1 x 500g pack penne pasta
- Bring 3 litres of water to the boil, add salt to taste.
- Add pasta and stir occasionally.
- Cook briskly for approximately 6-9 minutes or until al dente.
- Drain in a colander and drizzle with a little olive oil to ensure that the pasta doesn’t stick together.
- Coat pasta with Arrabiata sauce, portion into serving bowls and drizzle with pesto, top with parmesan flakes and basil leaves.
- Variation: you can add pitted olives as a garnish.