But what we did manage to do is to feast on some delicious home grown drumsticks and mangoes - it was the first crop of mangoes in my Mom's garden since she planted them two years back and we were all really excited about eating mangoes grown literally in our backyard! The drumsticks were such a delight too - fleshy,tender and none of that hard bitterness you usually taste in Delhi.
It was a bit trying though, cooking for so many people including three kids and between my SIL, Mom and me we took turns with each of the meals. We tried to keep it simple most days sticking to traditional kozhambus, sambar, porial and rasam for lunch and phulkas,dal and sabzi for dinner. But after a bit, even this got a bit monotonous and my daughter was soon clamouring for pasta. Well, this is a really simple recipe for pasta and particularly easy to make for a number of people - no labouring over a sauce yet fabulous tasting pasta tossed with vegetables and sprinkled with parmesan cheese is ready in minutes. Served with some crusty country bread and you have a complete meal.
Pasta - 200gms
Boil water with salt and a tsp of olive oil and add the pasta into the boiling water; cook for 8-10 minutes till just tender but not very soft. Rinse under cold water and keep aside smearing a few drops of oil to prevent them from sticking.
Tomatoes - 4 large, blanched, peeled and chopped
Garlic - 2 -3 cloves minced
Onions - 2 medium, finely chopped
Red chilli powder (paprika powder) - 1/2 tsp
Basil leaves chopped - 2 tbsp
(you can substitute with mixed dried herbs - 1 tsp)
Chopped bell peppers - 1 cup (I used yellow and green)
Grated parmesan - 3/4 cup
salt to taste
Olive oil - 1 tbsp
1. Heat oil in a pan and saute the garlic for a minute, then add the chopped onions and saute till translucent, about 5 minutes.
2. Add the chopped bell peppers and let them sweat till softened for another 5-6 minutes.
3. Pour in the peeled, chopped tomatoes,salt and paprika powder and saute for another 5 minutes till pulpy and soft.
4. Add the cooked pasta 5 minutes before serving and toss on a low flame for about 3 minutes.
5. Transfer to a serving dish and sprinkle the grated parmesan cheese over it while still warm.
I don't usually bake the pasta along with the cheese since it doesn't have a sauce and may turn out very dry.