Saturday, April 11, 2009

Sarah Kramer's 5-Minute Roasted Pepper Pesto & Pasta

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For April's Chef Spotlight dinner event, we're highlighting vegetarian and vegan chefs. I prepared this dish for the dinner and the recipe comes from Chef Sarah Kramer. I especially loved this pesto and think adding grilled chicken would be great if you wanted a non-vegetarian dish.

Sarah Kramer’s professional cooking career vegan when she whipped up a “zine”—typically a small, self-published magazine—filled with recipes to give as a Christmas present to her family and friends one year. Her zine took off and evolved into How It All Vegan, the bestselling cookbook that won a VegNews award for best cookbook in both 2003 and 2004. Following the success of her first cookbook, which is often referred to as “the vegan bible,” the vegan goddess with a vintage style and relaxed approach to cooking created two more tantalizing tomes: The Garden of Vegan and La Dolce Vegan.

A self-taught chef who inherited her adventurous approach to cooking from her parents, Sarah said she believes that veganism is not just about food, but is a positive, compassionate lifestyle choice. Living by the philosophy that it only takes one tiny spark to start a fire, she boasts that she has a pack of matches and is ready to burn! When not testing new recipes—or running a tattoo shop with her husband, Gerry—Sarah conducts live cooking shows at events throughout North America, pens a regular column for Herbivore magazine, and runs GoVegan.net, a popular vegan Web site. She has been a guest on TV shows including Canada AM and W-5 as well as many radio shows on stations like National Public Radio and the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.

Priding herself on “making things simple,” Sarah has a knack for serving up simply spectacular dishes, like 5-Minute Roasted Red Pepper Pesto and Pasta, Chocolate Banana No-Bake Pie, Nori Sushi Rolls, Sweet Potato and Apple Kugel, and Voracious Vegan Pâté. -- VegCooking

5-Minute Roasted Red Pepper Pesto and Pasta
recipe adapted from Sarah Kramer

Dry pasta (enough for 2 people)
3/4 cup roasted red peppers, drained*
*(I used a combo of unroasted red, yellow & green peppers)
1/3 cup walnuts
1/2 cup fresh basil, tightly packed
1/4 cup fresh parsley, tightly packed
1 garlic clove
1/4 cup olive oil

In a large pot of salted water, boil the pasta.

Meanwhile, in a food processor or blender, blend together the peppers, walnuts, basil, parsley, and garlic.
Slowly add the olive oil, while processing, until well mixed. Set aside.Drain and return the noodles to the pot. Add the pesto and toss together well. Serve immediately.

Makes 2 large or 4 small servings

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