Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Norene's Penne al Pesto Jardiniere for Presto Pasta

Norene Gilletz is one of my favorite people. I've written about her and her delicious dishes often. They've graced my table at just about every family gathering over the years. In fact, I did a search for past posts here and came up with no fewer than 8. Her website is packed with information, including lots of recipes. I even found one for Herbed Passover Noodles that I will definitely be making this Passover.

Needless to say, I'm excited that she has graciously shared a recipe from one of her earlier books for the big Presto Pasta Night 100 Celebration this Friday.

Source: Healthy Helpings (Whitecap) by Norene Gilletz

The starchy cooking liquid binds with the cheese to thicken the sauce. So pretty with 3-color pasta!

1 lb. penne (ziti, fusilli or rotini can be used)
1 onion, halved & cut in strips
4 peppers, (green, red, yellow &/or orange), halved, seeded & cut in strips
2 zucchini, cut in strips
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 1/2 tbsp. olive oil
3–4 tbsp. balsamic vinegar or lemon juice
Salt & pepper, to taste
1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 c. fresh basil, finely chopped
1 1/2 – 2 c. tomato sauce (bottled or homemade)
1 chopped tomato, to garnish
Parmesan cheese, to garnish

1. Preheat oven to 425 F. Prepare vegetables and place on a sprayed (or non-stick) baking sheet. Add garlic, olive oil and vinegar. Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper and mix well. Roast vegetables uncovered at 425 F for 20 minutes, until nicely browned.

2. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta according to package directions, about 10 minutes, until al dente. Ladle out a little of the cooking liquid just before draining pasta. Drain pasta but do not rinse.

3. Return pasta to saucepan. Add Parmesan, basil and about 1/4 cup of reserved cooking liquid; mix well. Add tomato sauce and roasted vegetables. Adjust seasonings to taste. Cook briefly, just until heated through. Garnish with diced tomato and sprinkle with a light dusting of Parmesan cheese, if desired. Great hot or at room temperature.

Yield: 8 main dish servings. Reheats well. If frozen, vegetables may lose some of their texture.

267 calories per serving, 4.6 g fat (1.1 g saturated), 3 mg cholesterol, 9 g protein, 48 g carbohydrate, 342 mg sodium, 434 mg potassium, 3 mg iron, 4 g fiber, 77 mg calcium.

• Penne with Roasted Vegetable Purée:
In Step 2, reserve about a cup of the cooking liquid from pasta. In Step 3, process 2 cups of the roasted vegetables until smooth. Add 1/2 cup of reserved cooking liquid to thin the mixture; process briefly. (If necessary, add a little more liquid.) Stir purée into pasta along with remaining ingredients. (This is a great way to get kids to eat their veggies!)

A very big THANK YOU, Norene!

If you have a recipe that you would like to share, please email it to me: ruth (at) 4everykitchen (dot)com. Those of you with blogs of your own, send me the link and a mention of Presto Pasta Nights. As my niece Katie used to say when she was little...."only three more sleeps" to the big roundup on Friday.


Joanne said...

All these vegetables in one place...this is certainly my kind of pasta dish!

Ben said...

I need to come up with something for this week's PPN. I don't want to miss this great celebration. This recipe sounds so good. I may give it a try :)