Sophia Loren once said, "Everything you see I owe to spaghetti." As an impressionable teenager, I was a big fan of Cinema Italiano and Sophia Loren so I figured, she knew what she is talking about. I ate spaghetti as if it was going out of style. Let's be honest, too much of a good thing may not do wonders for your figure but it makes you happy. It's fun to eat spaghetti. You have to wrap it around your fork, you can slurp it and it has that distinctive texture that everybody loves. And then you add cheese, sauce, some basil and... you feel euphorically satisfied. It is that comfortable feeling that is synonymous with happiness. And as tacky as that sounds, this is where beauty begins! Sophia Lauren knew what she was talking about after all.
My family loves pasta. Even my 3.5-year-old daughter Sandrine eats pasta with no disputes or mini temper tantrums. Therefore, I always look for new ways to make it. This recipe has some Asian flavours and is probably like no pasta you have ever tried. It is also a vegetarian pasta dish so if you want to introduce a weekly "no meat dinner" policy, this is a good way to do it. Deep, rich black bean and garlic sauce meets the sweetness of honey and acidity of white balsamic vinegar. This is your sauce. As soon as it hits sizzling, roasted vegetables and al-dente pasta, it releases even more of its aromatic properties and essence. To this you add some buttery white beans, crispy snow peas and a handful of cilantro. And there it is - the most satisfying, appetizing, steamy, slurpy goodness in a bowl. I like adding some chopped peanuts over this pasta. It is unusual but it gives your dish even more textural interest and appeal. And at the end of the day, the only thing that matters is happiness. And how you achieve it in your own kitchen is nobody's business but yours.
500 gr. spaghetti,
1 red bell pepper,
1 small package of cherry tomatoes,
A hand full of snow peas,
1 can of white beans,
A pinch of Chinese five spice.
For the sauce:
3 tbsp. black bean and garlic sauce,
3 tbsp. white balsamic vinegar,
1/2 cup olive oil,
3 tbsp. honey,
Chop up your zucchini, red pepper, cherry tomatoes and arrange in a roasting pan. Drizzle with some olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper and sprinkle with Chinese five spice. Bake at 375F for 30 min.
In a bowl whisk black bean and garlic sauce with vinegar, olive oil and honey.
Once your pasta is al dente, drain it and add roasted vegetables, white beans, snow peas, cilantro and the dressing. Mix and serve.