July Fourth Roasted Red Pepper Pasta Salad

July Fourth Roasted Red Pepper Pasta Salad

Amanda Agati created this tasty sophisticated pasta salad just in time for the fourth of July. This pasta is best served room temperature which makes it perfect for an outdoor barbeque and July fourth. Amanda recommends choosing a pasta that will absorb the sauce nicely, such as Cavatappi- which is a thick, curly pasta.

Roasted Red Pepper Pasta Salad Recipe

Ingredients

2 lbs Pasta, preferably Cavatappi

1 large eggplant- chopped in small cubes with skin on

5 large roasted peppers

½ cup Pignoli nuts

2 bunches of arugala, washed, drained and de-stemmed and torn

1 Large Pepperoni Stick

½ lb pitted large Moroccan olives, coarsely chopped

Two small jars of Artichoke hearts, drained

½ tsp of Crushed Hot pepper flakes

8 cloves of garlic- minced

1 Small can of tomato paste

½ lb Ricotta Salata- sliced into cubes

Preparations

1) Pre-heat the oven to 350 F. Boil the pasta until al dente. While the pasta is boiling, place the eggplant on a tray and drizzle generously with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast eggplant in the oven until lightly roasted. Let eggplant cool to room temperature once roasted.

2) Cover the bottom of a small sauce pan with olive oil. When the oil is hot, place minced garlic and crushed hot pepper flakes in the sauce pan. Add ½ teaspoon of salt and 1/2 a teaspoon of pepper.

3) While the garlic cooks, puree the roasted peppers in a blender and add to the sauce pan when the garlic is lightly browned. Mix can of tomato paste with 3 tablespoons of water to thin out the paste and) add to the sauce pan. Let the sauce cook for about 15 minutes on low heat. Then let cool.

3) When pasta is ready, place in a colander and rise with cold water to prevent further cooking. Let pasta drain.

4) Once the sauce has reached room temperature, mix in slowly to the pasta little by little, just enough so the pasta is lightly coated in the sauce. There should be no excess sauce.

5) Toast pignoli nuts in the oven, on 325 F until lightly brown. Watch the pignoli nuts carefully, as they burn easily.

6) Add pignoli nuts, olives, artichoke hearts, ricotta salata, and eggplant to pasta salad.

7) Slice pepperoni into thin strips about one inch long. Add to pasta salad.

8) Mix pasta salad well. Season to taste with additional salt if necessary.

9) Sprinkle pasta salad with arugala just before serving.

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Entertaining With: Amanda Agati

Amanda Agati

Entertaining is a skill that takes practice to acquire but when you’re a guest of Amanda Agati’s, she makes entertaining seem effortless. Amanda and her brother Greg hosted an elaborately catered pool party for about thirty guests last weekend. And Amanda herself presented us with a colorful variety of summer dishes poolside.

With an eye for food and fashion, Amanda’s culinary prowess is as impressive as her own. Amanda’s astute preparation allows her to wine, dine, and schmooze her guests without worrying about the food. Amanda’s charm paired with her divine seasonal fare make her an excellent hostess and an even better caterer.

Amanda’s attention for detail in the kitchen is apparent and appreciated in her execution. From appetizers to desserts, you can tell that the components in each dish were meticulously placed which is what makes them so refined.

Roasted Red Pepper Pasta Salad

Grilled Vegetables

Amanda says she never follows any one recipe. When asked about how she comes up with recipes Amanda says, “I create new recipes of my own based on dishes I’ve eaten, recipes I’ve read, and my own ideas. Anyone can follow a recipe, but to create a new dish that is completely your own is really challenging and rewarding, but it is also exciting- and that is where my passion stems from.”

Moroccan Chicken

Steak Fajitas

The elegant presentation of Amanda’s food is reflective of the sophisticated ingredients she takes care in using such as the arugula and ricotta salata in her Roasted Red Pepper Pasta Salad. But with her favorite foods & ingredients being lobster, truffle oil, rabbit, and homemade pasta I’m not surprised! In regards to her sophistication Amanda says, “I have a high appreciation for fine dining since my parents exposed me to a variety of fine cuisines at a very young age. In college, I studied abroad in Florence, Italy, a place I consider to be one of the great food capitals of the world. I also traveled extensively throughout Europe exploring regional cuisines. Enjoying great food is one my many pleasures in life.”

Entertaining by definition is to hold someone’s attention and Amanda Agati has clearly mastered that! At 24, this young and beautiful caterer has captured my attention with her enthusiasm for both food and life. Amanda is a third year law student at Fordham Law School and is currently interning with Burberry’s Intellectual Property Legal Department. Her interests include dancing, traveling, the culinary arts, and fashion. Amanda caters for small gatherings and intimate dinner parties, and can be reached at TheCutieFoodie@gmail.com to plan your event.

To be able to cook for people and share my love of food with them brings me great satisfaction,” Amanda Agati

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