Recipe: Lisa’s Pasta

Lisa’s Pasta
[Gluten Free if you use rice pasta or similar, Vegetarian] serves 4-5 [or three roommates with a few lunch leftovers.]

2 TBSP olive oil
2-3 large onions [or like, 4 medium ones. Use as many as you want, they’re delicious.] halved and then in thin strips
3 large bell peppers [4-5 smallish organic ones – I like the purple ones best] sliced into thin strips
3 large portabella caps, sliced into finger-size and then in thirds or quarters.
3 large zucchini [4-5 small ones – i like to mix and match yellow and green] sliced into thin half-moons if zucchini is large, or rounds if small.
1C balsamic vinegar. [this is an approximation – you may not need all of it, or you might want more. I basically pour until it’s slightly saucier than I want, and then I let it reduce for a while.]
3 TBSP pesto. [this is what really makes this dish awesome – I have gone without pesto, and it’s just not as good.]
1lb pasta [shapes work better than strands here, but knock yourself out. also, use rice pasta for gluten-freeness.]
parmesan cheese to sprinkle on.
salt and pepper to taste.

Start the water for pasta and before everything else. I like to add lots of salt and garlic powder to my pasta water before the pasta goes in.

In a large skillet, saute the onions in the olive oil until caramelized. Anyone in the house with you will wander into the kitchen and miraculously keep you company the rest of the time you’re cooking. You’re welcome.

Add in the bell peppers, mushrooms, and zucchini and let cook for a few minutes until things start to soften.

Add the vinegar until it’s a tad saucier than you want. Let things mellow for a few minutes with a lid before adding the pesto. Add some cracked pepper and salt if you think it could use some more – just wait until after adding the pesto as it is sure to be salty.

Side note – I make a batch of pesto and then freeze it in ice-cube trays for individual servings. This recipe works best with 2 cubes, which I’ve calculated to be roughly 3 tablespoons. The more the merrier, though. This dish can only be improved by it, and I really believe you can’t add too much.

Let everything hang out for 10 to 15 minutes on low heat with a lid, stirring occasionally.

Serve over pasta with copious amounts of Parmesan cheese.

The Makings of Lisa's pasta
I know the photo is terrible, but when I’m hungry I’d rather be cooking than taking arty food shots. *shrug*

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