About Beth

Beth, along with her husband, Mike, is co-owner of two Italian Deli/Markets in St. Louis - Viviano’s Festa Italiano. When not creating yummy new menu items for the deli, she’s the pediatric research lab supervisor at Washington University School of Medicine. Read more out about Viviano’s Festa Italiano.

About Irene

Irene loves to think, read and dream about food. She enjoys cooking & eating in general. Although she demures about her talents, Irene has a finely-tuned palate that her friends envy. She bakes on occasion. The rest of the time she's creating memories with her family and friends. . . or she's learning a new needlecraft technique.

About Deborah

Deborah is a wife, mother, grandmother, traveler, bootlegger, and a very poor speller! As Victor Hazan so eloquently puts it, Deborah has chosen Umbria to be the home of her soul. When she can’t be there in body, she spends her free time cooking & reading about Italy. She blogs mostly about food and about trips – past and future – here: Old Shoes New Trip.

About Doug

Doug lives in Eastern Ontario in a farmhouse built in 1903. He is a retired teacher with four adult children, a wife, a son-in-law, two Irish step-grandchildren and one grandson who he is lucky to hang with a lot. He has way too many books. Doug also blogs at To Slow Time Down.

About Cindy

Cindy lives in Eagle River, Alaska where her freezer is always full of salmon, halibut & shrimp. Cindy participates in several regular cooking challenges. You can read more about her cooking and life in the last frontier on her blog, Baked Alaska.

About Sandi

Sandi is a true Southerner, but a traveler & Italian cook at heart. She lives in Alabama and knows more about fried green tomatoes than fricassees. Her family owned the WhistleStop Café for many years. Sandi also blogs at Whistlestop Cafe Cooking.

About Jan

Jan, a serious home cook, has owned “Essentials” since 1992. She is passionate about all things Italian, especially the cuisine & the language. Jan blogs about her travels (next trip Italy May/June of 2010) at: Keep your Feet in the Street.

About Jerry

Jerry is a food obsessed Canadian. He learned to love Italian food as a child while eating the meals prepared by his Napolitano uncle. He learned to cook Italian foods by watching his uncle cook these feasts for the family. This love of Italian food has been honed through serious personal experimentation in eating and cooking. Willing to try most anything once, Jerry isn't so sure about tripe! Jerry also blogs at Jerry's Thoughts, Musings, and Rants!

About Palma

Palma is a Marriage & Family Therapist in Palm Desert, CA. She’s an Italian-American with a passion for cooking, entertaining, & travel to Italy. She’s always planning her next culinary adventure to Italia on her blog, Palmabella's Passions

About Kim

Kim is our permanent sub and the image above gives you a good idea of the look on her face when she realized she was drafted. Kim loves to eat, drink, travel and cook - probably in that order. When she's not here, you can find her organizing and leading food, wine and beer tours in Europe as co-owner and operator of GrapeHops or blogging at What I Really Think.

« Peas, Peppers, and Prosciutto Sauce with Cream | Main | Zucchini Sauce with Basil and Beaten Egg Yolk »

Roasted Red and Yellow Pepper Sauce with Garlic and Basil


Marcella promised me that if I was patient, I would eventually be able to used garlic and basil. This luscious, tomato-less pasta sauce stars bell peppers. Big, gorgeous yummy bell peppers.


Since the entire success of this dish rests upon the quality of the peppers, be sure to choose the very best raw, firm peppers with lots of meat. This was a challenge for me. Not because I couldn’t find great peppers. It’s just that I am irrational about the price of peppers. My husband will tell you that watching prices and bargain shopping when it comes to food is not my strong point. I tend to go for quality without regard to economy. I’ll willingly pay $6 for a couple of white beautiful fennel bulbs, or new baby artichokes, or a few perfect tomatoes. But for some reason that I probably need a few hours on a psychiatrist’s couch to figure out, paying $6 for three heavenly peppers just drives me crazy.

Prep the washed peppers by cutting them in quarters, cleaning out the core and membrane, and then removing the skins with a sharp swivel vegetable peeler. Take your time peeling so you preserve as much of the meat as possible.


After cutting the peeled peppers into manageable pieces, they are roasted, not over a fire or in an oven but in garlic infused oil in a sauté pan.

When the peppers are tender but not mushy they are tossed with the cooked drained pasta. Rigatoni was Marcella’s first recommendation, so I decided to go with an extra large size to match the rustic look of the peppers.

Once the sauté is tossed with the pasta, melted butter is added. Finally, at the very last minute before serving, freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano and roughly torn basil leaves are folded in.


When I put this pasta bowl on the table in front of Dan, he looked at it and asked, “No meat? When are we going to have a pasta dish with a little meat in it?”

I sweetly suggested that he stop talking and try tasting, he would have meat later, in a future pasta dish. But, I’m not telling him how much later. Next week he will get some nice anchovy in his pasta. After that some tuna. Then comes sardines. And, finally, on June 29th, he will have fresh pork sausage.

Comments (5)


I love the bright colors of peppers in your dish today! I agree about the price of peppers, but it's worth the extra $$ for excellent peppers! I'm sure their flavors popped with each mouthful. :D

Brava Deborah!

Love your post. And it's funny, I'm the exact same way on spending money on most food, but hating to spend it on peppers. Wonder why that is...

Deborah this sounds delicious and it looks absolutely beautiful.

As usual, your photos are wonderful! The pasta looks great!

Marcella Hazan:

I am just catching up with the blog. I had visitors, and guess what sauce I gave them on their pasta? Yes, this one. It never fails. Thank you for peeling the peppers raw. So many people don't get it, but it critically affects the flavor of the dish. Incidentally, our peppers at Publix sometimes cost twice as much as yours.

Marcella, one thing we are all learning is, if it isn't important, you wouldn't have included it in the instructions...so of course, I peeled the peppers raw.

Ouch...twice as much! That would give me heart palpitations. :grin:

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on June 1, 2010 6:55 AM.

The previous post in this blog was Peas, Peppers, and Prosciutto Sauce with Cream.

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