Spaghetti with fried peppers, at first glance, you don’t think it would work. But it does! Peppers, when fried, become sweet – even better when the edges are starting to brown a bit.
Capers and the olives add more complexity to the sauce. I am quite certain some people would try adding anchovies; for some reason, it’s the next step that comes to mind when I see capers and olives (almost in every dish!). If you like anchovies, try doing that. I like anchovies myself, but I prefer not to use it with this dish. I tried it once and I felt that it does not really complement the sweetness of the peppers.
Surprisingly, this is quite a light dish – for a pasta, that is. Whenever I cook this I can easily finish two of my normal servings, and that is just for ‘primi’. 😀 I normally cook this at least once a week during summer, because of the colors in the dish. (Don’t you agree it reminds you of summer? 😀 ) But to be honest, since different variety of peppers are good the whole year round, I do not see a problem making this dish anytime of the year.
Red, yellow and orange peppers are great for spaghetti with fried peppers. I don’t think that’s the same for green peppers, though. I tried at least a couple of times, and both times they were not as sweet as the other types – even when I cooked them longer. You can also give this a try, you might like it more than I did.
You do NOT need to add sugar in the pan when frying the peppers. You do NOT need it to caramelize, just let the peppers soften on its own. Make sure the heat is not too high either, or you might end up burning them. Bottom line, you need to be patient when frying the peppers, it normally takes 15 to 20 minutes, in medium-low heat – but it’s certainly worth it. 🙂
- 250 grams spaghetti
- 1 & 1/2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 yellow bell peppers, julienned
- 2 red bellow peppers, julienned
- 2 cloves garlic, sliced thinly
- 2 tsp capers
- 8 pcs olives, sliced thinly
- pinch of pepperoncino (chili flakes)
- salt and pepper to season
- parsley for garnish
In a wide pan, heat up the olive oil, on a medium-high flame. Once ready, add the julienned bell peppers and turn the heat to medium-low. Stir occasionally to make sure nothing gets burned.
Fry the peppers until they are soft and brown bits are starting to form on the side. It normally takes 15-20 minutes to do this.
Halfway in frying the peppers, start cooking the spaghetti as per package instruction.
Once you see brown bits starting to form on the sides of some peppers, add the garlic and cook until it becomes fragrant. Add the capers, olives and pinch of pepperoncino. Cook for around 3 minutes and add salt and pepper to season.
Once the spaghetti is ready, combine them with the peppers in the pan and mix. Make sure that the strands of spaghetti are properly coated.
Transfer to a plate and add parsley on top. Serve.