After reading the fabulous work of fiction: La Cucina by Lily Prior…I was inspired to cook some Sicilian style pasta. I found a recipe from the cookbook Sicilian Home Cooking by Wanda and Giovanna Tornabene that looked tasty to me AND conveniently enough, I already had most of the ingredients in my cucina. The pasta was fairly easy to make with the most time consuming steps being roasting the yellow peppers and boiling the fettucine.
I enjoyed the pasta. It was different from most pasta dishes that I I usually make in that the “sauce” was mainly just olive oil with a few seasonings. In my opinion, for the amount of pasta and other ingredients in the pasta, the recipe called for a smidge too much olive oil. Next time I might try adding shrimp or chicken to give it a little protein and make it more appeal ling to my husband who for whatever reason seems to be of the opinion that pasta without meat or seafood is like a sin against nature.
Check out the Cook The Books Roundup for the dishes that others were inspired to whip up after reading La Cucina.
Fettucine with Yellow Peppers (from Sicilian Home Cooking)
- 2 large yellow bell peppers
- 3 fresh tomatoes, peeled and cubed
- 1 tablespoon capers
- 1/3 cup freshly chopped basil
- 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
- 1/2 cup diced smoked pecorino cheese
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1/2 pound fettucine
Heat the broiler. Broil the peppers on a piece of aluminum foil on rack about 5 inches from the heat source, turning occasionally, until the skin has blackened all over.
Place the peppers in a brown paper bag. Close the bag securely and let the peppers rest for 5 minutes.
Remove the peppers. When cool enough to handle, remove the stem ends, seeds, and any white membrane. Cut the peppers into thin strips and put into a large bowl. Add the tomatoes, capers, basil, fennel, pecorino, and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and toss. Set aside.
Bring 4 quarts of water to a boil. Add 1 tablespoon of salt. Stir in the fettucine and cook until al dente, stirring often.
Drain the pasta, reserving 1 cup of hot pasta water. Add the pasta to the sauce in the bowl and toss, adding a little hot pasta water if necessary. Taste for seasoning. Serve hot.