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Easy vegetarian pasta dishes are becoming more popular, and I am all for it.
I encourage my boys to try a variety of vegetables. It’s not always easy. My youngest, being 6, has only recently started experimenting with a diverse range of colourful vegetables. Before moving to New Zealand, we enjoyed typical South African vegetable dishes. These usually included pumpkin with cinnamon and sugar and sweetcorn.
However, since relocating I have found that I long for a bigger variety of vegetables. I started introducing meat-free Mondays. My husband, being a meat-lover, has luckily never appealed this. I have started accumulating wonderful recipes to consider in the future.
Tonight I opted for an easy vegetarian pasta dish. Also, pasta is so versatile and super easy to prepare. I had some leftover green peppers and celery that needed to be used. If you want, make your own pasta at home. This easy recipe will show you how to do it in a few easy steps. Here are other pasta recipes for you to try as well.
The key is to have a nice roasting tray or dish so that the vegetables can caramelise in it without burning or sticking to it. You’re ideally looking for something like this.
How to make Balsamic-Roasted Tomato, Onion and Green Pepper Pasta
For this easy vegetarian dish I used a punnet of cherry tomatoes. Only half the red onion was used (as this one was very big), one green pepper, two celery stalks, garlic, and some fresh basil. Prepare the vegetables by cutting the cherry tomatoes in half. I sliced the onion and pepper and cut up the celery. I then placed these into a baking tray.
To prevent the garlic from drying out and burning, it’s wrapped in foil. I let it steam in the parcels together with the vegetables and as a result it gets super soft and sweet. Drizzle the vegetables with balsamic vinegar and olive oil. Finish off with salt and pepper. It is put into the oven to caramelize for approximately 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, prepare your pasta. Follow the packet instructions. I used penne, as both my boys prefer this.
As soon the vegetables have cooked, remove from the oven. Take care when opening the garlic foil parcels, as they will be hot. Mash the garlic with a fork and add the basil leaves. Toss it around in the pan.
Finally, add the vegetables to the pasta. Keep some of the pasta water and don’t drain it all. This prevents the pasta from being too dry.
Serve warm, and if you like, sprinkle some Parmesan cheese on top.
Until next time!
Balsamic Roasted Tomato, Onion and Green Pepper Pasta
- 3 cups Pasta Your choice of pasta (We used Penne)
- 2 Celery Stalks Chopped
- 1 Green Pepper Sliced
- 1 Red Onion Cut in half if large
- 1 punnet Cherry Tomatoes Cut in half
- 90 ml Balsamic Vinegar
- 60 ml Olive Oil
- 3 Garlic Cloves
- Salt to taste
- Pepper to taste
- Handful of Basil
- Preheat the oven to 200°
- Combine the cherry tomatoes, onions, green peppers and celery. Add to medium-sized roasting pan.
- Drizzle the vegetables with the balsamic vinegar and olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Toss it around to ensure the vegetables are coated evenly.
- Wrap the garlic cloves in aluminum foil and place onto the pan.
- Roast the vegetables and garlic in the oven for around 20 minutes, long enough for the balsamic vinegar to reduce and caramelize the onions.
- Meanwhile bring a pot of salted water to the boil and cook the pasta until al dente. Follow the package instructions. I found that 4 cups of water was enough for 3 cups of pasta, but you may need to add more water if need be. Once the pasta is cooked, drain it, but keep at least ¾ of a cup of pasta water to the side.
- Once the vegetables are cooked, take it out. Carefully unwrap the garlic parcels, be warned, they will be very hot. Mash them with a fork on the sheet pan, until they are soft and broken up.
- Add the basil to the sheet pan and toss to combined with the garlic and vegetables.
- Add the vegetables to the pasta, together with the ¾ cup of pasta water and stir with a wooden spoon until all the pasta is well covered with the balsamic mix.
- Serve warm, sprinkled with Parmesan cheese. (Optional)