Farfalle with tomatoes and red pepper sauce

Farfalle commonly known as "bow-tie pasta," is derived from the Italian word farfalla (butterfly).  It finds its origin  in Northern Italy way back in the 1500s. Usually, the farfalla is formed from a rectangle or oval of pasta with two sides trimmed in a ruffled edge, and the center pinched together to make the unusual shape. They are sometimes ridged, known as farfalle rigate. Different varieties are available; plain, tomato, and spinach. Though usable with most sauces, farfalle are best suited to cream and tomato dishes.

I have always found bow tie pasta to be one of the cutest pasta shapes and my daughter especially loves eating it because of the butterfly shape. This is a super fast way of preparing the sauce and usually takes the time to boil the pasta. Sweet and tangy, it makes a great  lunch in minutes.

Preparation and cooking time : 15 minutes

  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil 
  • 2 medium garlic cloves, minced 
  • ¼ tsp crushed red pepper flakes 
  • 1/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes, packed in oil, drained and chopped 
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped jarred roasted red peppers 
  • ½ (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes 
  • ½ tsp sugar 
  • Salt 
  • Freshly ground black pepper 
  • ½ tsp Italian seasoning
  • 6 ounces bow-ties pasta (farfalle) 
  • Grated Parmesan cheese for topping

  • Heat olive oil in a large pan. Stir in the garlic, red pepper flakes, sun-dried tomatoes, and roasted peppers and cook until the garlic is aromatic, about 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, sugar, salt and season with pepper. Bring to a boil over high heat, and then reduce to a simmer. Cook uncovered, until thickened, about 10 minutes. Remove the sauce from the heat, stir in the seasoning, cover, and set aside for about 5 minutes for the flavors to come together. 
  • Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to the manufacturer’s directions, until al dente. Drain, saving about 1/2 cup of the pasta water.
  • Add the drained pasta to the tomato sauce and toss. Thin with a little pasta water, if needed. Season with salt and pepper. 
  • Serve with parmesan cheese sprinkled generously on the top.