- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 2 cloves, minced
- ½ thinly sliced red pepper
- ½ thinly sliced yellow pepper
- ½ thinly sliced green pepper
- 2 large ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced in ½ inch pieces (2 cups)
- 4 ounces soft goat cheese (Chevre)
- Cooked Penne pasta
- ½ cup coarsely chopped toasted hazelnuts
- ½ cup cooked artichoke hearts, quartered
- ½ cup Kalamata or Sicilian olives
- ¼ cup chopped fresh basil
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
In a large skillet, heat one tablespoon olive oil. Over medium heat, sauté garlic until softened, about two minutes. Add peppers and sauté for another two minutes. Add tomatoes and stir just until they release their juices, about two minutes. Stir in goat cheese to make a creamy sauce. Toss with cooked pasta, hazelnuts, artichokes, olives, and basil. Drizzle with lemon juice and remaining olive oil. Season with freshly ground black pepper to taste.
To peel tomatoes, spear the stem end with a fork. Holding the fork, immerse tomato in boiling water for about one minute. Cool by holding the tomato in a stream of cold water. The peel should slip off easily.
To seed tomatoes, cut in half horizontally. Place one half in the palm of your hand like you were holding a baseball for an overhand throw. Firmly squeeze at the same time, making a downward throwing motion over the sink or waste basket. Most of the seeds will come out. Just don't let loose!
Mushrooms with Pasta and Hazelnut Oil
Yield: 2 Servings
- 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter
- 1 pound mushrooms, ends trimmed and sliced into ¼ inch thick slices
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 8 ounces dry linguine fini
- 2 to 3 tablespoons hazelnut oil
- ½ cup chopped parsley
- ½ cup toasted hazelnuts, chopped
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Cook the linguine; while it is cooking, make the mushroom topping.
Heat butter in a large skillet. Add the mushrooms and saute for a moment, Add a cover and a tad of water and simmer for 5 minutes or until tender. Remove the cover and evaporate the liquid. Add the garlic and saute just until aromatic. Remove mushrooms from the heat and season well to taste with salt and pepper.
When the pasta is done, return it to the cooking pot and toss with mushrooms, hazelnut oil and parsley; keep on tossing until well combined and transfer to 2 heated pasta bowls. Garnish with hazelnuts and dinner is done. Accompany with steamed vegetable salad.