Sundried Tomato, Capers and Black Olive Pasta
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 adult serves

Served and ready to eat

So ... back to the Pasta Puttanesca ... for some reason I thought of that lovely cafe a couple of weeks back, as we went there so often we may as well have stayed there, and I wanted to create a dish that I would enjoy as much as I enjoyed theirs. I also wanted a super easy meal to put together that would only require one cooking pot (the Thermomix of course), and this is what I have come up with.

My family don't like anchovies, but I do, so I needed to sacrifice those. But we all love fresh red peppers, roasted red peppers (bought in jars and stored in brine), sun dried tomatoes (preference is for Sandhurst 125g pack of dried tomatoes without oil), black olives, capers, and parmesan cheese so I had a lot to work with. If you use sun dried tomatoes stored in oil, ensure that you dry them off well in kitchen paper, pressing them into the paper to remove as much oil as possible.

I love toasted seeds (sunflower seeds and pepitas) and always have a jar in the fridge so I wanted to include those for crunch as well as protein. If you don't already have any toasted let me encourage you to do a batch and keep them in the fridge ... they are delicious on yoghurt, salads and dips, in sandwiches (yes, true!) and even just to nibble on! They add a gorgeous flavour and are a great alternative to nuts if you have nut allergy in the family (like us). To cook the seeds heat oven to 180 degrees fan forced, and bake for 6 to 8 minutes ... check at 6 minutes as they can toast quickly, then add extra 2 minutes until done to your liking.

The sauce is uncooked so is made first in the ™ bowl, then put aside into a large mixing bowl where you will add your cooked pasta and mix it through ... there is no need to clean the ™ bowl before cooking your pasta, just fill it with 1.2 litres of water to start the process. This not only saves on time and washing, but also "seasons" the water you are going to cook the pasta in adding more flavour to it.

This pasta is also delicious cold (I had some the next day for lunch), and I can imagine it being served as a pasta salad in summer sprinkled with extra herbs and feta cheese or shavings of parmesan, perfect for a BBQ or picnic.

Tori doesn't like too much chilli so I only added a teaspoon of chilli flakes, but if it was for just Bryan and I, I would add fresh red chilli instead. So don't hold back if you don't wish to.
  • 50g capers, drained
  • 50g pitted kalamata olives, cut in half
  • 20g fresh basil leaves, torn into pieces
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 60g parmesan cheese, cut in cubes
  • 120g sundried tomatoes (without oil so drain really well)
  • 150g roasted red peppers (from a jar, drained)
  • 150g fresh red capsicum
  • 150g mix of toasted sunflower seeds and pepitas
  • 40g olive oil
  • 40g white wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes, or fresh red chilli if preferred
  • 2 tsp sea salt flakes
  • 500g penne or fusilli pasta
  • 1.2 litres of water
  • 20g olive oil
  • 1 tsp sea salt flakes
  • Extra grated parmesan cheese for sprinkling
  • Fresh basil leaves, torn
  1. Place the capers, olives and basil leaves into a large mixing bowl big enough to take the pasta when it is cooked
  2. NB: If you don't already have milled parmesan handy for serving, place up to 250g (cut into cubes) into ™ bowl and mill 10 seconds / speed 9 ... put aside for later, and what is not used keep in the freezer where it will keep for some time ... do not clean ™ bowl
  3. Place garlic into TM bowl and chop 3 seconds / speed 7
  4. Add the rest of the ingredients and Turbo x 1 second x 3 times
  5. Stir mix around and repeat Turbo x 1 second x 3 times
  6. Stir mix around and repeat for a final time Turbo x 1 second x 3 times (I prefer to Turbo instead of chopping so that I can control the texture of the sauce as I prefer it to be course)
  7. Pour sauce into the bowl with capers, olives and basil leaves and stir though … put aside whilst you cook pasta … do not clean TM bowl
  1. Place water, oil and salt into TM bowl and cook 10 minutes / 100 degrees / speed 1
  2. Add pasta through MC hole and cook 12 minutes* / 100 degrees / reverse / speed soft (spoon symbol) (* cook for the time the packet states, but for this dish I like to add an extra minute, so my packet stated 11 minutes cooking time but I cooked the pasta for 12 minutes)
  3. Drain pasta into colander, and sit colander on top of ™ bowl while you move it over to the sauce bowl ready for mixing
  4. Place pasta directly into the sauce ingredients and stir through
  5. Serve each dish sprinkled with extra parmesan and freshly torn basil leaves
Recipe by The Passionate Pantry at