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Monday, August 20, 2007

Express Italian Meal

Express Italian Meal

I was going mad after thinking what to post for this Summer Express Cooking Event :O then I saw a message left on my previous post from some anonymous giving me the idea to repost the Hearty Salad, Spaghetti with roasted peppers medley and Strawberry cups for this event by Mallugirl.

I was little busy with lot of things going on past few weeks so hope my previously posted recipe will be accepted. This is a super easy, fast and express meal for any time. As I did lot of talking in the previous post, I am keeping mum here so that I can finish on time and post this recipe for the event.

Hearty Salad: Lettuce orange cherry tomatoes salad with honey dijon and lime juice dressing

This refreshing salad is done within 5 mins of time and very refreshing for a hot summer day, only thing is you have to prepare the dressing or can substitute with plain lemon juice. The recipe for the same you will find it here or check the express directions

6 leaves of Romaine Lettuce, torn
6 cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered
1 orange, peeled and cut pod wise
1 carrot, grated
½ red onion, chopped
½ tsp orange zest
4-6 walnuts, toasted and chopped
for dressing:
½ lime/lemon juice
1 tsp dijon mustard
1 tbsp honey
2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 tsp sugar
pinch of salt/ as per taste
1 tsp ground black pepper


0-2 mins
  • Mix all the veggies in a bowl, top it with orange zest
  • Prepare the dressing by first adding dijon mustard in the lime/lemon juice whisk well.
  • Add freshly ground black pepper, salt, sugar, honey mix well.
2-5 mins
  • Whisk vigorously while adding extra-virgin olive oil.
  • Spread over the salad, mix and cover it with plastic wrap and keep refrigerated.
  • When ready to eat top it with chopped toasted walnuts.
Main course: Spaghetti with roasted pepper medley and basil

This express meal is done within 15-20 mins if you have all the ingredients handy.

1 small bunch of uncooked spaghetti (I use Barilla)
3 bell peppers, red, orange and yellow or any roasted bell pepper
4 tbsp of pasta sauce (tuttoroso/ragu)
1 big clove of garlic, chopped
2 shallots, chopped
½ of lime/lemon juice
½ of fresh basil leaves, torn
1 tbsp of roasted peanuts, coarsely grind
1 tsp of chilli powder (cayenne)
1 tbsp of grated cheese
1 tsp of butter
2 tbsp of extra-virgin olive oil
salt as per taste
ground black pepper for seasoning
0-15 mins
  • Cut the peppers lengthwise as shown in the above picture, coat them with 1 tbsp of extra-virgin olive oil, sprinkle some salt and ground pepper. Toss and roast it on a tava or in oven till the edges are browned.
  • Meanwhile cook the spaghetti as per the instructions on the box, check al-dente, drain and keep aside.
15-20 mins
  • While the peppers are roasting heat butter and 1 tbsp of extra-virgin olive oil in a large sauce pan, saute garlic and shallots.
  • To this add the pasta sauce, chilly (cayenne) powder, salt. mix and add the roasted peppers, stir well for a minute or two.
20-25 mins
  • Toss in spaghetti and add lime/lemon juice, roasted peanuts, torn basil leaves and let all the flavors combine.
  • Sprinkle some grated cheese and serve hot.
Dessert: Strawberry dessert cups with whipped cream

6 dessert cups/short cake cups
5 tbsp strawberry preserve/any fruit preserve
Whipped cream for topping(fresh or store bought)
4-5 fresh bing cherries for garnishing
Method :
0-3 mins
  • Place the store bought dessert cups in the serving plate, spread the strawberry preserve evenly on the top of the cup
  • Top it with whipped cream as per your requirement. I love little extra topping for mine.
  • Garnish with chopped cherries or any of your favorite fruit.
  • Serve immediately.
Hope you all will enjoy as mush as I did while making this meal. Now who cleans the dishes? This is my entry for express cooking event.


Suganya said...

I was breaking my head that I had seen this recipe elsewhere before. Scroll down, thats yr JFI entry. Nice job ;) I would love to make this express meal!

Cynthia said...

Padma, your Italian meal complete with salad and dessert is amazing. The pics are very appetizing.

Kajal said...

You send this dish me in Express paln……yummy yummy dish of express Italian meal… Salad is tasty with honey and lime juice, healthy dish for event......Spaghetti with roasted pepper is also nice idea....nice work for strawberry dessert cup with white cream it looks more beautiful, tasty also and garnish with cherries than nothing need any more my dear really moth-watering....

sra said...

Padma, the strawberry dessert is a great idea!

Lia said...

its wonderful combination Padma, really i love spagetty and ur dessert looks yumm :)

Finla said...

Don't know which is the best dish in the three ... as they all look yummy and so summery well done ; i love pasta dishes.
Thanx for the post

FH said...

WOW!! Beautiful dishes!! Good job Padma:))

Anonymous said...

I dont eat pasta whenever I go to italian restaurant because I find it to be bland. I will try your version as it has peppers. May be I will like it, as the pictures are so tempting that I would definetely love to give a try.

Latha Narasimhan said...

Wow! nice meal. I like the dessert most!Great pictures.

Tee said...

Great entry and this meal looks so tempting!

Manasi said...

Wonderful! I am having a tough time deciding whaich I like better! Love the dessert cups!! Too Good!!

Padma said...

Hey Suganya, sorry abt that...yeah even i was scratching my head for the express cooking entry...LOL!

Hey Cynthia, Thanks you so much for your heartfelt message, I am glad you liked it!

Kajal, I can say by your words that you loved this express meal, I will send you in express airmail gimme ur address ;) thanx dear for da lovely comments...

Sra, do you wanna have them, I am still having few cake cups handy, can make for u withing secs

Lia, thanks for stopping by, feels happy so see all your comments here. Hope you enjoyed it!

Padma said...

Happy Cook, tx for visiting my blog, glad you liked all of them. pls join the pasta lover club

Thanks Asha!

Hima, glad that my spaghetti recipe turned you on! LMK when you try this

Thanq Latha!

Thanks Tee & Manasi, loved ur comments! I loved dessert the most

Coffee said...

I had bookmarked this post when you first posted it as well! Thanks for reminding me again. :)

Anonymous said...

i was thinking i commented for this post and where has my comments gone then i found it's for sure is express meal.nice pics r beautiful.

Padma said...

Dear Coffee and Ramya, thanks for your kind comments, I am glad you liked it and bookmarked it too! Its a great feeling when I can see you people are loving my recipes and willing to try then....Thank Q all once again! said...

Looks beautiful, especially the strawberry cups. I love these kind of pasta dishes. Italian is my favorite!


Padma said...

Tx favo too!

Chef Jeena said...

Hi Padma great spaghetti recipe this is just the kind of meal I would cook myself! Great minds heh :D You have lovely recipes Padma I like your sweet too I bet it was real tasty! :)

Padma said...

thanks Jeena, bet you, that was the most quick dessert I can make

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