I love the flavor of roasted red peppers, and I've had my eye on this recipe for a while. I finally got to make it this weekend, and I'm happy to say it will be added to my "favorites" list. Yes, it uses half & half. No, it isn't a low-fat dish, but keep in mind when you order a dish like this in a restaurant, they are typically using heavy cream and lots of butter. I cut back on the butter (the original recipe called for 1/4 cup). And the half & half.... well, you're not ingesting the full 2 cups - after all is reduced, and taking into account the red peppers, you're probably getting about a 1/4 cup of it on your plate, which equals 7 grams of fat. The red peppers are full of vitamins A & C, so maybe that helps justify the splurge - it did for me. : ) This recipe was adapted from allrecipes.com (Roasted Red Pepper Cream Sauce). Here's what you need:
- 1 jar (12 oz.) roasted red peppers
- 2 Tbsp. chopped garlic
- 1/4 fresh basil, roughly chopped
- 3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 Cups half & half
- 1/4 Cup grated Romano cheese (If you don't have Romano, Parmesan will work fine too.)
- 2 Tbsp. butter
- 1 tsp. kosher salt
- 1 boneless chicken breast (about 6 to 8 oz.), cut into bite-sized pieces
- 12 oz. linguine
- salt & pepper to taste
Next, add to the skillet: 2 Tbsp. olive oil, roasted red peppers, garlic, and basil. Cook over medium heat for about 8 minutes so the flavors blend.
Meanwhile, start your pasta: Cook 12 oz. of linguine according to package directions. After you drain the pasta, toss it lightly with olive oil, transfer it to a large serving bowl. Lay the sauteed chicken pieces on top of the pasta and cover with foil to keep warm until the sauce is finished.
After the red pepper mixture has cooked, very carefully, pour the mixture into a blender and puree until smooth. Return the puree to the skillet:
Bring the mixture to a boil, stir in the half & half, and reduce heat. Simmer gently for 5 minutes.
Stir in the Romano cheese, 1 tsp. kosher salt, and the butter. Cook and stir until the cheese is melted and the butter is blended in. Taste-test for seasoning. Sprinkle in additional salt if preferred. Pour over pasta and chicken. Serves: 8.