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November 2013 Issue
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Classic capsicum and sun-dried tomato pasta

It's hard not to love vegetarian dishes with meals like this! Photo: Mark Banham

When we go exploring – often to get back to nature – one of the big problems we have to overcome is our carnivorous nature.

Head out for more than a weekend and you’re going to have to say goodbye to fresh meat (unless you can catch it). More than a month and you’re kissing goodbye to dairy. Apparently, deep space explorers will need to get by on dehydrated algae crackers.

So if you’ve got grand plans ahead, whether it’s summiting Tutuko or setting foot on Titan, it’s a good idea to learn to love vegetarian food. Fortunately, with recipes like this one, it’s really not that hard.


Serves: Two

Weight: 850g

Volume: 1l

Kilojoules: 10,600

Cost: $4.69

Time: 30min


1tbs olive oil

2 red onions, diced

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

2 red capsicums, diced

5 sundried tomatoes, finely chopped

1/2tsp cayenne pepper

1/2tsp smoked paprika

2tps balsamic vinegar

1/4cup toasted pine nuts

1/4cup grated parmesan

1/2cup UHT cream (optional)

500g spaghetti


Part One: Heat oil in a pan, add onion and fry until soft. Next add the garlic and cook for a minute more. Add the capsicum and sun-dried tomatoes, cover and simmer for 15min. Uncover and increase heat, stirring often until the sauce thickens. Add the balsamic vinegar and season to taste.

Part Two: If you’re just doing a short trip you can make the whole lot out in the field, so skip to Part Three now. However, if you’re going long haul, this one’s a great recipe to run through the dehydrator. Allow the sauce to cool then blend it with a stick blender, keeping it just a little chunky. Spread the sauce onto greaseproof paper and place in the dehydrator. If you don’t have one just do it in the oven overnight at lowest heat. Keep the dehydrated mixture in freezer until ready to use.

When you’re out in the field, it’s just a matter of adding water and simmering until it’s back to the desired consistency.

Part three: Add the UTH cream (optional). Cook the spaghetti as per the directions then stir together with the sauce. Garnish with some shaved parmesan and pine nuts and serve.