This pasta salad is full of flavor from fresh tomatoes, roasted bell pepper and black olives. Tossed with an easy to make dressing, and fresh parsley and making use of whole wheat penne makes a quick and healthy lunch or is perfect to make ahead for a picnic or lunchbox.
I don’t know if you have tried the TSRI’s pasta salad from the blog, but it’s one of my favorite pasta salads. This roasted bell pepper and black olive pasta salad recipe is adapted from that recipe and if you love pasta salads you will love this one.
Roasting bell pepper is one of my favorite things to do, so much so that I love to use it in my indian tomato based curries too. My homemade pasta sauce also uses roasted red bell pepper. The added flavor that roasted bell pepper imparts to a sauce, or salad is absolutely amazing.
Its really hot here in India. Hot and humid. We have got no rains so far, with the clouds teasing us almost every other day. Entering the kitchen to cook is something I dread, because I know I will come out feeling like taking a shower immediately. Recipes like this easy pasta salad where the only cooking involved is cooking the pasta, and the oven takes care of the roasting bit, are a welcome respite.
I have been thinking of starting a small herb garden. We do grow mint and for a brief period had successfully grown thyme and oregano too. In US, I had a flourishing basil plant and there was always more basil than I could use. Every time I make pasta or pizza, I tell myself I should grow basil, parsely, thyme at home instead of traveling 30 minutes for a small bunch of these herbs.
Using fresh herbs always makes a difference to your salads, or the sauces used in pastas and pizzas. I would recommend using fresh whenever you can.
If you try this recipe, do please tag me on any of the following platforms- instagram, facebook, twitter or leave a comment here.
This easy panna cotta recipe with toasted oat crumble and roasted peaches is a great summer entertaining dessert. Sharing a video tutorial on how to make panna cotta and get the slanted presentation look.
Summer is stone fruit season. Summer also means hot days. You want easy recipes that don’t take too much time in the kitchen. And if you are like me, you want to make use of all the stone fruits possible for fruit based desserts.
If you are entertaining and looking for an easy summer dessert recipe, panna cotta is a lovely option. Despite being cream based, panna cotta is a light dessert and when you pair it with roasted peaches and some toasted oat crumble you get a myriad of textures and flavors.
The slightly tart and sweet roasted peaches complement the creamy panna cotta. The toasted oat crumble gives a crunchy texture. I love desserts where you get to experience different textures. After watching multiple episodes of Masterchef Australia, I realized how just adding a few more elements with complementing flavors and textures can lift a dessert from being simple to wow.
Both the toasted oat crumble and roasted peaches come together quickly. Make the panna cotta first, since it takes about 4 hours to set, and while the panna cotta is setting, make the toasted oat crumble and roasted peaches. The only tricky part of this panna cotta recipe is mixing the warmed cream with the bloomed gelatin. You have to be careful not to get lumps. But in case you do, that too can be taken care of by passing the mixture through a sieve.
When you are ready to serve, do not forget to add the mint. It is what gives freshness to this dessert. Panna cotta is best served immediately after it is set. If let to stay for longer than a day or two, the gelatin makes the panna cotta rubbery. You could counter that effect by letting the panna cotta sit at room temperature for 30 minutes. But I don’t think it would last that long in the refrigerator!
Remember when I used to make food videos for the blog? I took a break in between and now while I make videos for clients, I hadn’t been making for the blog any more. I am planning to change that. Today, with the recipe, I am also sharing a short video tutorial for the panna cotta.
This video would not have been possible without the help of my friend Anubhav (you can follow his work here), who helped me with shooting the footage. We worked on another video together too, and I will share the recipe and the video for that soon. Hope you like the video. I would love to hear your thoughts on it.
The panna cotta recipe is the same as the one I used for the panna cotta with roasted strawberries (another great recipe to try this summer). There are so many ways you can serve panna cotta. And even though it looks super fancy, its very quick and easy to make. I hope you get to try it out. If you do try the recipe, do let me know. You can share your pictures by tagging me on instagram, facebook, twitter or by leaving a comment here.
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract, or 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
2 packets powdered gelatin (about 4 teaspoons)
6 tablespoons (90ml) cold water
Fresh mint leaves, to garnish
For the roasted peaches:
6 peaches, cut into slices
1 tbsp honey
½ tsp lemon zest
3 tbsp brown sugar
2 tbsp butter
1 tbsp water
2 tbsp bourbon/brandy
1 tsp vanilla
For the oat crumble
4 tbsp melted butter
4 tbsp whole wheat flour
2 tbsp brown sugar
4 tbsp oats
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp vanilla
2 tbsp crushed almonds
¼ tsp cinnamon
For the Panna Cotta:
Heat the heavy cream and sugar in a saucepan.
Once the sugar is dissolved, and the cream is substantially warm, remove from heat and stir in the vanilla extract.
Lightly grease the custard cups or any mould that you are using for your panna cotta with a neutral-tasting oil.
Sprinkle the gelatin over the cold water in a medium-sized bowl and let stand 5 to 10 minutes till it swells up.
Pour the very warm Panna Cotta mixture over the gelatin and stir until the gelatin is completely dissolved.
Divide the Panna Cotta mixture into the prepared cups. If you are wary whether your gelatin has set or not, strain the mixture before pouring into the cups.
Chill the panna cotta until firm, which will take at least two hours but preferably let them set for at least four hours.
If you’re pressed for time, pour the Panna Cotta mixture into wine goblets so you can serve them in the glasses, without unmolding. To get the slanting look, hold the glasses in a slanting position with the help of loaf pan, or a dish that comfortably holds them at a slant. Pour the cream-gelatin mix mix into glasses until half full. Allow to chill in slanting position until set. .
To make Panna Cotta with sheet gelatin: Soften 25g (approximately six sheets) in a liter of cold water for 5 to 10 minutes. Wring the sheets out and stir them into the warm Panna Cotta mixture in step # 4, until dissolved.
For the peaches:
Preheat oven to 220 C. Slice the peaches and remove the stones. Arrange on baking tray. Sprinkle with brown sugar, honey, lemon zest, brandy/bourbon, water and add butter. Mix and bake in oven for 20 minutes or until peaches are soft and caramelized nicely.
For the oat crumble:
Preheat oven to 325/175.
In a large bowl mix the oats, flour, almonds, cinnamon nutmeg.
In another bowl, whisk the butter with the honey and vanilla; drizzle over the crumb topping and mix until well coated.
Spread the mix on a baking sheet. Bake for 25-30 minutes till golden brown. Let cool completely, about an hour.
Run a sharp knife around the edge of each Panna Cotta and unmold each onto a serving plate.
Top each with a little of the roasted peach and toasted oat crumble. Garnish with 2-3 fresh mint leaves.
I love pasta. If it were up to me and I could eat as much as I want without the worry of carbs, I would eat pasta at least 3-4 times a week.
For me the secret to good pasta lies in its sauce. Today I am sharing one of my favorite ways to prepare pasta/pizza sauce from scratch. I have quite a few tried and tested recipes. For a meat based sauce I use my dad’s spaghetti sauce recipe. When I have cherry tomatoes, this Marco Pierre’s pasta sauce recipe is what I make. But on most days when I make pasta sauce from scratch I use this recipe that I am sharing today.
The recipe is easy but takes some time to come together. It isn’t active cooking time, since the oven does most of the work. Slow roasting the tomatoes releases the sweet juices in them and imparts a lovely flavor. Roasting a red bell pepper along with the tomatoes gives the final sauce that lovely red color you see in store bought sauces, without adding any canned tomatoes to the sauce. And to it, if you add roasted garlic, the sauce becomes absolute perfection in terms of flavor.