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Red pepper za'atar pasta recipe

Red pepper za'atar pasta recipe

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  • Recipes
  • Ingredients
  • Pasta
  • Pasta types
  • Penne

Pasta is flavoured with red peppers, lemon juice and za'atar (a Middle Eastern herb blend) in this quick and easy vegetarian pasta recipe.

2 people made this

IngredientsServes: 2

  • 225g penne pasta
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 medium red peppers, diced
  • 1 tablespoon za'atar

MethodPrep:10min ›Cook:15min ›Ready in:25min

  1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to the boil. Add pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender yet firm to the bite, about 11 minutes.
  2. Pour olive oil and lemon juice into a pan over medium heat; stir until combined, 1 to 2 minutes. Add red peppers and za'atar. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes.
  3. Drain pasta and return to the pot. Pour red pepper mixture over pasta; mix well.

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How to make roasted red pepper pesto I absolutely adore roasted red pepper pesto but have never made it myself. Making pesto often seems like a chore, so I all too often reach for a store-bought alternative, which is always pretty good. This recipe was so super easy and utterly delicious, I made it twice. I tweaked it slightly the second time and it was even more lovely. It’s the perfect recipe to adapt to your own taste. I got so excited about it, I decided to make a quick little recipe video to show you how to make it. Yes, it really is a case of banging all the ingredients into your food processor and whizzing it into zesty perfection. The only real pre is cutting the four peppers and roasting your pine nuts. You could add chilli if you wanted heat, more or less basil if you want the herbaceousness or perhaps a combination of herbs. The roasted red peppers form a wonderfully creamy paste which binds it all so beautifully. Even better than a herb-only pesto. I have used toasted pine kernels as the nutty element, but any oily nut such as macadamia or cashew would work well. A splash of good quality white wine vinegar gives this pesto a wake-up call and adds a touch of vibrancy. Simply stirring this through pasta, with or without a grating of Parmesan, makes a perfect meal. Its delicious on a cracker or as a dip for vegetables. Naturally low in carb its the perfect accompaniment for just about anything. Sandwiches, pitas, wraps, burgers, and everything. pesto freezes really well and I always keep a few small glass jars in my freezer for future use. Flatbreads with zahtar and red pepper paste Biberli Ekmek

This delicious flat bread with spicy red pepper paste, biber salcasi, feta cheese and za’atar or zahtar spice blend is a specialty from the Antakya cuisine and brings special memories back. I remember my grandmother and mum preparing the delicious topping at home and we children would take it to the local bakery, firin, to be baked over flat breads. They always smelled mesmerizing and we couldn’t wait to have a bite (or two).

Aromatic and pungent zahtar or za’atar blend

Fresh Zahter or Zahtar is a popular herb grown in southern part of Turkey, especially around Kilis and Antakya in spring. Fresh zahter looks more like summer savory, or a crossing of marjoram, oregano and thyme. This herb is wonderful on salads like this Zeytin Ufeleme, Olive salad with pomegranate molasses and zahtar. Za’atar is also the name given to the exotic blend of herbs, spices and nuts, widely used in Southern Turkish as well as Middle Eastern cooking. At my home town, Antakya, zahtar blend is a rich mixture of dried zahter, sesame seeds, crushed cooked chickpeas, cumin, nigella seeds, sea salt, sumac and many more. It has a lovely, pungent, nutty taste and flavors salads, meat, and vegetables beautifully. In Antakya, locals simply dip their bread to a bowl of olive oil than to this zahtar blend for a delicious breakfast. I now see wholesome zahtar available even in supermarkets these days, you can also make your own zahter or za’atar blend, here’s my recipe.

Spread the topping over the flat bread and let the dough rise for 30 minutes.

These delicious and healthy flat breads also feature Antakya’s much loved olive oil, Turkish hot pepper paste, biber salcasi and crumbled feta cheese, cokelek. Combined with zahtar, sesame seeds and cumin, it makes a scrumptious, wholesome and fragrant topping for the flat breads. There is a delicious heat from red pepper paste, biber salcasi, a staple in Antakya cuisine and in my kitchen, which add so much flavor. You can make your own red pepper paste, biber salcasi with my recipe it really is worth the effort. If not, you can add red pepper flakes, mixed with tomato paste instead.

Delicious flat breads with crumbled feta, red pepper paste, sesame seeds and spices Biberli Ekmek

I hope you enjoy Biberli Ekmek it is delicious served as a mezze (try with hummus, muhammara, cevizli biber – red pepper paste and walnut dip or with cacik, yoghurt dip with cucumbers and dried mint), accompanies tea time, soups and main courses so well. My cookery book, Ozlem’s Turkish Table, Recipes from My Homeland, is a tribute to this rich culinary heritage and scrumptious authentic recipes like this delicious flat breads, dips, mezes, regional specialties are all included. You can get a signed copy at this link, if you’d like, now 25 % off for a limited time. We also have this new apron, featuring embroidery of Antakya’s daphne leaves in the design, it can make a lovely gift, you can order at this link.

Uses for Leftover jar of Sicilian Olives - also known as Castelvetrano olives:

UPDATE: If you haven&rsquot read (or made) the other recipes made with Flora Fine Food products, after you read this post, check out the following mouthwatering recipes inspired by Italian & Mediterranean food:

  • Summer Antipastp Salad in a Jar is a great meal prep idea for your busy week. With five different variations, you can take this salad to work every day of the week, or keep for easy week-night dinners.
  • Spiced Lamb Meatballs with Piquillo Pepper Pesto. This is my favorite recipe so far. Maybe because I love lamb.
  • Cauliflower Crust Pizza with Artichokes and Roasted Red Pepper. This recipe is also vegetarian with the option to make it vegan just substituting the cheese for vegan cheese.
  • Crispy-skin Snapper with Caper Salsa. I love this recipe because I learned, and share with you, how to make crispy skin on a fish. Since then I have applied the same technique with both salmon and cod.

If you need more ideas, don&rsquot hesitate to e-mail me because I can give you a bunch of great ideas. That is part of being "Your Recipe Concierge."

Remember with just a few ingredients to can make a great pasta dish. Just be creative and play with different flavors. I hope you get to make this Roasted Red Pepper Pasta with Sicilian Olives, and share it with us in the comments below or tag @Spoonabilities in social media.


    • Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
    • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
    • 1/4 cup red onion cut into small dice
    • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, plus more to taste
    • 1/2 pound cremini mushrooms, wiped clean with a damp cloth and thinly sliced
    • 1/2 cup homemade vegetable stock or store-bought, low-sodium vegetable broth
    • 1/2 pound thin or pencil asparagus, thinly sliced on the bias, tip end left about 1 1/2 inches long
    • 3/4 cup heavy cream
    • 3 tablespoons pine nuts
    • 1 pound dried fettuccine or pappardelle
    • 2 tablespoons shredded basil
    • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
    • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

Za’atar Roasted Cauliflower and Tortellini Salad

Why? Because Halloween on a Tuesday night is HARD for old folks like myself.

Seriously, you guys. I’m in rough shape today. I just don’t have the same stamina for going out and drinking like I used too.

And that sugar hangover is no joke, either. I’m trying to stay away from all the candy right now, but the kids in my town are actually trick-or-treating on Friday night, because we had a big storm earlier in the week that resulted in a lot of power outages, downed trees and other damage. So the town made the decision to postpone the Halloween festivities for a few nights, so everyone could have a safe and fun evening. BUT that means that I’ve still got bags of Halloween candy hiding in my cabinets. I can’t wait to give it all away!

I’m also attempting to curb my cravings by loading up on big, hearty salads like this Za’atar Roasted Cauliflower and Tortellini Salad.

This recipe was initially inspired by my friend Lisa’s Za’atar Roasted Cauliflower with Dates, Pine Nuts and Thyme. Her version sounded so damn tasty (I’m a sucker for both za’atar seasoning and cauliflower!), so I got to work playing with some of the ingredients she used, and combining them with whatever else I had on hand (a little “clean out the refrigerator” recipe is always a good idea!) and this salad was born.

It’s a bit non-traditional, I suppose. Because it’s not really a standard pasta salad. And it’s not really a standard leafy green salad, either. It’s somewhere in the middle. And I kind of dig it. This recipe has just enough tortellini to satisfy those cheesy cravings. But isn’t so loaded down that you feel heavy after eating an entire bowl. The za’atar cauliflower is super flavorful. And between the little browned, tasty bits that were stuck to the roasted cauliflower, and the olive oil and fresh lemon juice clinging to the tortellini, I found I didn’t even need to put extra dressing on the greens. But you could certainly give them a toss in a little bit of dressing of your choice, if desired.

Oh and before I go, I want to just say that November is full on Thanksgiving mode here at Floating Kitchen. So if you have any special requests, make them known now and I’ll try to address them before the big day!


1 can (15 oz) chick peas,
1 teaspoon garlic, minced
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon
- fine sea salt and freshly
ground pepper

The Roasted Red Pepper-Walnut Spread

1 ½ cup toasted walnuts
2 large red bell peppers,
roasted, peeled and
¼ cup olive oil
1 cup diced tomato
2 tablespoons pomegranate
½ teaspoon ground allspice
- fine sea salt and freshly
ground pepper

The Za'atar Pita Chips

1 package pita
2 tablespoons olive oil
- za'atar spice
- fine sea salt

Is this recipe suitable for my dietary requirements? - Za'atar roasted eggplant slices are dairy free, egg free, nut free, gluten free, soy free and generally allergy friendly. It is also suitable for most diets, including weight watchers, slimming world, whole30, paleo, low carb, low calorie and keto. It is also vegan.

Can I use frozen eggplant? - Absolutely! If you have frozen sliced eggplant available, you can totally use those.

Can I omit the oil? - The oil helps to keep the eggplant sliced moist and juicy, and prevents them from drying out in the oven. Feel free to omit it, but the results may not be as good.

  • 4 to 5 medium red potatoes (1½ pounds), scrubbed
  • 4 medium shallots, quartered
  • 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons sumac
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 small roasting chicken (about 3½ to 4 pounds), patted dry
  • 1 small lemon
  • 5 tablespoons za&rsquoatar spice blend
  • ¼ teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 6 thyme sprigs

Preheat the oven to 425°F. Cut each potato into 6 wedges. In a 9 x 13-inch metal or glass baking dish, toss the potatoes and shallots with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and the sumac, salt, and black pepper.

Season the cavity and exterior of the chicken well with salt and pepper. Zest the lemon into a small bowl, halve the lemon and set aside. Add the remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil to the bowl along with 4 tablespoons of the za&rsquoatar and the red pepper flakes and gently stir. Stuff the lemon halves, garlic, and thyme sprigs inside the chicken, then rub the chicken all over with the za&rsquoatar mixture. (If you want to, you can tie the legs of the chicken together it&rsquos easier than doing a full chicken trussing, which is impressive but not necessary for a dish like this.) Sprinkle with the remaining tablespoon of za&rsquoatar.

Place the chicken, breast-side up, on top of the potatoes. Roast the chicken for 15 minutes, then reduce the heat to 350°F and continue to roast the chicken until a chicken leg jiggles when pulled, the juices run clear, and the potatoes underneath the chicken are soft and the ones on the edges are crisp and golden, about another hour and 20 minutes (the rule is 23 to 25 minutes per pound of chicken, but the high roasting temperature at the beginning of the recipe shaves off a little time).

Remove the chicken from the oven and let rest for 10 minutes. Remove the lemon, garlic, and thyme springs from the cavity, discarding the garlic and thyme. Carve the chicken right on top of the potatoes, letting the juice coat the potatoes, then squeeze one or both halves of the reserved lemon on the chicken and potatoes.

Warm Baby Shell Pasta Salad

When a dish is as good served warm or cold, you know you have a winner &ndash and a solid lunch the next day! Petite pasta shells, sautéed Swiss chard, butter beans, garlic, sweet green peas, and feta tossed in a light, creamy dressing with yogurt, za-atar, and lemon.

Contains: Milk, Wheat, Gluten

May Contains: Mustard, Sulphites, Egg, Sesame, TreeNuts, Peanuts, Soy, Fish, Shellfish

May Contain: Egg, Fish, Mustard, Peanuts, Sesame, Shellfish, Soy, Sulphites, Tree Nuts, other sources of Gluten

What We'll Send

Nutritional Info Per Serving

Cooking Directions

Tip: This meal is also great for serving cold for lunch the next day!

Bring 2.5 litres (5 litres for 4 servings) salted water to a boil. Add baby shell pasta and cook for 5-7 minutes, or until al dente. Drain in a fine mesh sieve and set aside.

Prepare Ingredients

Wash and basil, lemon , and Swiss chard . Pick and chop basil leaves. Zest and cut lemon in half. Remove Swiss chard leaves from stem. Cut chard leaves into ¼ inch ribbons. Dice chard stems into ¼ inch pieces. Drain and rinse butter beans in a fine mesh sieve.

Prepare Dressing

Add yogurt , za&rsquoatar , and lemon zest to a large mixing bowl. Season to taste with half of the lemon juice and salt.

Cook Vegetables

Heat a large skillet over medium. Add 2 tbsp. (4 tbsp. for 4 servings) olive oil to hot skillet. Add red onion and Swiss chard stems. Saute for 2-3 minutes or until becoming tender and golden. Add butter beans, garlic , and green peas . Cook for 2 minutes, or until beans are warm and peas are bright green. Season with red pepper flakes to taste. Stir in basil and Swiss chard leaves for 1-2 minutes, or until leaves are tender.

Finish Dish + Serve

Add pasta and vegetable mixture to dressing. Mix well. Crumble in feta . Season to taste with remaining lemon juice and salt. Divide into large bowls. Enjoy!


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