Ingredients for 6 people:350 g penne rigate8 bell peppers1 jar Peperotta (280 g) or homemade Peperotta150 g breadcrumbs150 g fresh pecorino cheese100 g grated aged pecorino cheese50 g pine nuts50 g capers in vinegar2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil to grease the mould (plus enough to grease the peppers) salt pepper
Wash the bell peppers and pat them dry, then grease their surface with olive oil (you can do this by “massaging” them as our cook Stefania does, or you can use a sheet of absorbent paper or a brush) and arrange them in a baking tin lined with greaseproof paper. Cook them in a preheated oven, at 220 °C, for roughly 30 minutes. Take the peppers out of the oven and leave them for about a quarter of an hour covered with kitchen foil, then peel them. Cut them in quarters lengthwise, remove the seeds and internal membranes and set the slices of pepper aside. Cook the pasta in plenty of boiling, salted water; strain it when very “al dente”, tip it into a bowl and mix it with the Peperotta. Add the pine nuts, the capers (strained of their vinegar) and the diced pecorino cheese, season with salt and pepper, and stir again to amalgamate everything. Grease a deep, round mould, sprinkle the inside of it with a handful of grated pecorino and breadcrumbs mixed together. Line the bottom and sides with the slices of bell pepper you set aside (leaving a few to cover the top) and season with salt: make sure that the slices are half in the mould, with the other half spilling out over the edge. Tip in the pasta, spread it out evenly and lay the remaining slices of pepper on the surface to close the “timballo”; fold in, on top of the filling, the slices that were protruding out over the edge. Sprinkle with the remaining mixture of breadcrumbs and grated pecorino, add a drizzle of olive oil, season with salt and freshly ground pepper, and cook in a preheated oven, at 200 °C, for 15 minutes. Take the “timballo” out of the oven, leave it to cool for at least 15 minutes, then turn the mould upside down on a plate and serve. Buon appetito!