Welcome back to my little corner of the internet.
Today, I would like to share with you a recipe I have been a fan of ever since I actively started cooking. Pesto alla Calabrese is a great and incredibly simple recipe for those of you who do not enjoy to stand in the kitchen for hours, but would still like to eat healthy.
Pesto alla Calabrese resumes Mediterrenean cuisine in one simple plate. You will find the big players of the kitchen from the Southern region of Calabria in one plate: Aubergines, tomatoes, peppers, herbs and ricotta.
The recipe is really easy, all you need is a blender or mixer nearby. Here it goes:
1 red or yellow bell pepper (this is key for the colour), chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
2-3 tbsp tomato purée
150 g ricotta
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
If you have time, chop the aubergines (eggplants for my US-American friends), salt them and leave them to drain in a sieve for at least one hour. Wash them before you proceed.
Heat a decent gulp of olive oil in a skillet. Fry the chopped aubergines and the onions. When they start to get soft and just slightly brown, add the peppers. Reduce heat to prevent from burning and cover with a lid to speed up the cooking process.
After about 5 minutes, add the tomato purée. Once the vegetables are soft, remove from heat and let it cool down a bit. Now blend the mixture in a blender or use a mixer. It is up to you if you would like to have a few pieces or if you are looking for a smooth texture. Personally, I prefer a few chunks in there for some bite.
Now gradually add some ricotta, until you get a sauce of a nice bright orange colour. This is why you want to use a bright coloured bell pepper.
Season with salt and pepper and add the chopped basil, or dried basil, if you do not have it fresh.
Serve with pasta, or as a spread on bread, with meat or even alone.
Did you know this recipe? Let me know in the comments below.