Pasta: Rigatoni night!


Rigatoni pasta, cherry tomatoes with capers and green olives, Sicilian grated pecorino!

Put a large pot of water on to boil.
In a large heavy skillet, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat and add yellow pepper. Cook, stirring often, until tender, 5 to 8 minutes. Add garlic, thyme and red pepper flakes. Cook, stirring, until fragrant, 30 seconds to a minute.
Add cherry tomatoes with capers and green olives, and turn up heat to medium-high. When tomatoes begin to bubble briskly and sputter, turn heat to medium. Cook, stirring often, until tomatoes have cooked down to a fragrant, thick sauce, about 15 minutes. Add , black pepper and basil, stir together, taste and adjust seasoning.
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Oil a 2 1/2- to 3-quart baking dish or gratin with olive oil.
When water in pot comes to a boil, salt generously and add rigatoni. Cook al dente, removing from the water 1 minute sooner. (Reserve some of the cooking water.) Transfer pasta to a large bowl.
If the tomato sauce seems very thick, thin out as desired with 2 to 4 tablespoons pasta cooking water. Scrape into bowl with pasta, add Sicilian grated pecorino and toss well. Scrape into prepared baking dish. Drizzle remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil over the top. Cover with foil.
Bake 25 minutes. Uncover and continue to bake another 5 to 10 minutes, until bubbly and beginning to brown in spots. Serve hot.

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