Sunday, April 3, 2011
7:30 AM | Posted by Brandy K | | Edit Post
I eat a ton of boring lunches. It's the sad truth. During the week, it's just me and a picky 4 year-old. I figure why knock myself out making a gourmet lunch for someone who's reaction is going to be less than complimentary. I'm making a change though, because truthfully, if I have to eat another turkey sandwich...
Choke! I will!
So, I started this past week--making my lunches more interesting, with Roasted Pepper Pasta Salad. My girl did not eat this yummy pasta salad with me, but she did not avert her eyes and make gagging noises when I suggested adding a bit to her plate. She'll come around--I'll keep telling myself that. In the meantime, there's more for mama!
I enjoyed this salad the day I made it, and it was even better the next day. It came together really quickly and I think you could change it up quite easily. Roasting your own peppers is so, so easy and way cheaper than buying the pre-made version. I'm roasting my own from now on.
Here's the recipe. Enjoy!
Roasted Pepper Pasta Salad
Source: adapted from Great Easy Meals from Food Network Magazine
12 oz. tube-shaped pasta
2 bell peppers (red and/or yellow), halved, stemmed and seeded
6 cloves garlic, unpeeled
1/4 cup pine nuts or slivered almonds
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
8 oz. fresh mozzarella, cut into cubes
1 bunch fresh basil, torn or cut in a chiffonade
2-3 chicken breasts, cooked and cut into bit size pieces
1. Preheat the broiler. Bring a pot of salted water to boil. Add pasta and cook as directed on label. Drain and rinse under cold water. Shake off excess water.
2. Meanwhile, place the bell peppers cut side down on a foil lined broiler pan, add the garlic and broil until charred, 7-8 minutes. Transfer the peppers to a plastic zip-lock bag, close and set aside for about 8 minutes.
3. Heat a dry skillet over medium-high heat. Add the pine nuts or almonds and toast, shaking the pan frequently, about 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool.
4. Squeeze the garlic from its skin onto a cutting board. Add 1/2 tsp salt; mince and mash into a paste with a large knife. In a large bowl, add the garlic paste and drizzle with olive oil. Add lemon zest and then squeeze in all of the lemon juice. Whisk until combined. Peel the roasted peppers and slice into thin strips; add to the bowl with lemon/garlic mixture. Add the mozzarella, basil, nuts, pasta and chicken to the bowl and toss. Add salt and pepper to taste.
This recipe is linked to: What's Cooking Wednesday
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