I was watching television Saturday night, as I was getting ready for bed. On the news, was a story about an older man who had excruciating knee pain that was being helped via injections of some kind of pharmaceutical grade capsicum. Or in layman’s terms, make that red pepper. That’s right, hot chili pepper and it was making this man’s pain go away; better than any other drug and no side effects.
Herbalists and alternative medicine users have known this for years. Cayenne pepper, capsicum, is a natural pain reliever. Not only that, but it has the ability to do about 100 other healthful things, including rev your metabolism, help digestion, improve circulation, stop bleeding, you name it—the claims are endless.
And while I won’t vouch for each capsicum claim ever made, I will tell you that this spice adds some kick to your tacos, or anything else you happen to add it to.
Even if you doubt the veracity of hot pepper’s healing proponents, surely you’d enjoy a little spice in your dinnertime! Here’s a recipe using cayenne pepper—enjoy!
Red Pepper Pasta
12 ounces spaghetti noodles, cooked
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
2 medium red bell peppers (deseeded, deribbed and cut into strips)
1 large onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, pressed
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 to 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
3/4 cup chicken broth
3/4 cup Romano cheese, grated
1 cup low-fat cream cheese, at room temperature
In a skillet over medium high heat, heat your olive oil. To the hot oil, add the peppers and onions. Cook till peppers are wilted and onions are translucent. Add the garlic and cook another minute or two; don’t let the garlic turn brown. Add the basil, stir and remove from pan.
To the emptied skillet, add the chicken broth and bring to a simmer, scraping up any browned bit on the bottom of the pan. Add the Romano and cream cheeses, whisking in until well blended and simmering. Now add the pepper mixture back to the skillet and mix well. Add the cooked pasta and toss. Serve with additional Romano cheese garnishing the top if desired.