Friday, January 16, 2009

What's for dinner: Roasted Vegetable Pasta


In August 2002 I accompanied Robert to a conference in Napa Valley. There were several excursions offered for attendees and spouses, and I elected to go to a cooking demonstration at the Culinary Institute of America followed by a tour of the St. Helena Olive Oil Company. The appeal to me was, of course, the cooking class, but I remember nothing about it other than the beautiful building that housed the CIA.

San Francisco 030

San Francisco 029

The St. Helena Olive Oil Company tour, however, was engrossing, and I was enthralled by its founder, Peggy O'Kelly, She is a fascinating entrepreneur and a single mother of two daughters. I bought several of her products and signed up for her email list.

San Francisco 031

I have continued to purchase products from her over the years (her raspberry balsamic vinegar is a favorite of mine), and periodically she sends interesting emails with recipes and stories (currently she and her daughters are living in Florence for a year, and I've been enthralled to hear how she's gone about enrolling the girls in school over there and about the wonderful local people, culture and cuisine they are experiencing).

Last year Peggy sent this recipe, and it has become a favorite winter dish at our house. It's not at all complicated and doesn't take a long time to prepare. Vivian can eat about half of it in one sitting!

Roasted Vegetable Penne Pasta
adapted from Peggy O'Kelly, St. Helena Olive Oil Company

3 red bell peppers, cored, seeded and cut into 1" pieces
3 zucchini, quartered lengthwise and cut into 1" slices
3 yellow squash, quartered lengthwise and cut into 1" slices
1 yellow onion, peeled and cut into 1" pieces
¼ cup olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon St. Helena Olive Oil Co. Italian Seasoning (or other Italian seasoning)
1 pound penne pasta
3 cups St. Helena Olive Oil Co. Red Heirloom Tomato Sauce (I love her sauce, but you could probably substitute any plain, not too thick pasta sauce)
¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese and ¼ more for topping
½ cup grated smoked Mozzarella cheese
1 cup grated Fontina cheese (or plain Mozzarella, but I really think it's better with the Fontina)

Toss the vegetables with the olive oil and seasonings. Arrange on a baking sheet and roast at 450° for 20-25 minutes.

Cook pasta in a large pot of water for about 7 minutes. It will continue cooking in the oven so you don't want to overcook it at this point.

Drain pasta and combine with vegetables, tomato sauce and cheeses. Pour into a 9x13x2" baking dish. Top with remaining Parmesan cheese and bake at 350° for about 20 minutes.

Serves six.

Aren't the vegetables beautiful? My store did not have regular yellow squash so I bought these little ones instead. They were cute but a bit pricey. The zucchini looked a little small to me so I purchased a few extra


This is her Red Heirloom Tomato Sauce and the cheeses after I've chopped them. Fresh mozzarella is too moist to grate

Vegetables roasting - you can't believe how good they smell!

Ready for the oven. This dish only holds about two-thirds of the recipe, so I put the rest in a smaller dish and freeze it for another time

Sometime I serve this with a baguette and a green salad, but if I'm feeling lazy, I call it a one-dish meal!


JMW said...

I just came across your blog - wonderful site! Plus, in reading your profile, you're the first person I've come across in the blogging world who also lists "The House of Mirth" as a favorite book. So, I plan to visit your site. often! Happy New Year!

3 Peanuts said...

Oh Eloise,

That sounds DELICIOUS!!!!! I love the story and the photos too. I will need to try this as I am in a cooking rut.


Amber M. said...

HOLY YUMMINESS! And it looks like one I could even pull off. You have the best recipes...thanks for sharing them with us!

JoAnn said...

WOW, looks and sounds wonderful. Thanks

What is the red ceramic thing on the counter?

And I just read "House of Mirth" this week.

annechovie said...

Wow, this looks absolutely amazing, Eloise! You are making me hungry - I have GOT to try that. Thanks so much for the recipe and have a great weekend!

Ruby's Fairy Godmother said...

Yummy...this may be a perfect meal for this weekend! Thank you for sharing!

Buzzings of a Queen Bee! said...

Thanks for this recipe! It sounds yummy and healthy with all the veggies in there. I put it on my list of dishes to try! :)

Nithya said...

I was checking some local blogs on kappaprep's blog and came across your site. My kids like pasta more than Indian food(we're from India originally) and this recipe looks mouth-watering. Thanks!

Linda@ Lime in the Coconut said...


I do a pasta salad with grilled veggies. Kinda similar.

Like your taste, girl!

The Mrs. said...

That looks soooo good!!!

Tami said...

Looks delicious! I do a summer version on the BBQ, so this idea is great. We miss it in the winter.

I think you went on my dream trip! It looks like a great place.

The 5 Bickies said...

This looks and sounds delicious! I was just in Napa on Saturday and was looking for Olive Oil but wanted to buy local and that wasn't one of our stops. Next time! I did get some wine though!