Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Vegetarian Fajita Pasta

Vegetarian Fajita Pasta

Things have been a little crazy around the Cook, Pray, Love kitchen for the past few weeks. I went back to school, took a trip to Texas for my candidacy interviews (which I passed and am now a candidate for Holy Orders), and just haven't been very inspired by food. It always takes me a few weeks to readjust, and my energy level has been seriously low. Then, this weekend came. On Saturday, I woke up to a beautiful, clear, cool fall morning. I threw open the sliding glass door and set to re-organizing the kitchen. I hadn't moved anything since we moved in a year ago, and the kitchen had a bunch of space that wasn't being used effectively. I cleared off counters, organized glasses and drawers, and threw away the phone books that were taking up the top of our refrigerator. A trip to Target yielded a pot lid rack and a new dishrack. Finally, I was feeling like I wanted to get back in the kitchen.

A plethora of pasta and peppers led me to this dish. It's very conducive to whatever vegetables you have (or don't have) on hand. I would've thrown some Asian eggplant in there, but the pan was already full to overflowing. This is spicy, flavorful, and makes a ton of leftovers. It would also be great for sharing at a potluck. The amounts I used are reflected below.

Vegetarian Fajita Pasta
adapted from: Veggie by Season

1 lb. macaroni or penne
2 cloves minced garlic
1 onion, sliced
8 oz. sliced mushrooms
1 summer squash, sliced
1 red bell peppers, sliced
2 green pepper, sliced
2 jalapeno, sliced
Salt and Pepper
1 15 oz. can tomato sauce
1 15 oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed
2 tsp. chili powder
4 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tsp. smoked paprika
1/2 c. shredded cheddar cheese
Chopped cilantro, Sour Cream or Guacamole for garnish (optional)

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt heavily, cook pasta until al dente. Drain.
Heat a large skillet over medium-high, add mushrooms, zucchini, peppers, onion, and garlic. Sautee veggies for 10-15 minutes, until they’re tender. Season with salt and pepper.
Add tomatoes, black beans, spices and pasta. Stir to combine.
Pour into a casserole dish and top with cheese.
Bake for 15 minutes, until cheese is melted and pasta is bubbly.
Plate and serve with garnishes.