Recipe: Mediterranean Pasta

This is my favorite recipe of all time. Ever.  I make it at least once a week (if not more).  I first had this dish at a favorite local Italian restaurant.  After moving out of state (and away from the restaurant), I knew I had to recreate my favorite entree on my own (or else suffer endless withdrawal symptoms or very, very long car rides for my pasta fix.)  So here it is, my rendition of Mediterranean Pasta.  (Make it.  Eat it.  Love it.  You'll thank me later. Trust me.)

On a side note, when I make this recipe I don't measure the ingredients.  I just eye-ball it and tweak as I go.  I've tried to come up with some measurements for you guys here, but feel free to make changes as you see fit.  Add more peppers for a bit more spice.  Cut down on the olives to reduce the saltiness.   (etc., etc.)  To me the best recipes are those you can throw together and easily make your own.

Mediterranean Pasta 

Stuff you'll need:
1 12-oz. box of tri-color rotini
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 cups tomatoes diced
2 large cloves of garlic minced
1/3 cup pepperoncinis sliced
1/4 cup kalamata olives pitted and sliced
1 tablespoon capers
1/4 cup fresh basil (or 1/2 tablespoon dried)
1 tablespoon fresh oregano (or 1/2 tablespoon dried)
1-2 lemons juiced
1/4 cup feta crumbled
Red or white wine (optional)

Cook the rotini according to the directions on the box.  Meanwhile, heat the oil in a saucepan over medium heat.  Once the oil is hot, add the garlic and pepperoncinis to the saucepan.  Cook until the garlic is golden and the peppers are softened, being very careful careful not to burn the garlic.  (Tip:  If the garlic turns brown, it's been overcooked).  Next, add the following ingredients to the saucepan: tomatoes, kalamata olives, and capers, followed by the basil and oregano.  (Tip:  When using fresh herbs rather than dried ones, wait a few minutes before adding them to the saucepan.)  Cook for about 5-10 minutes.  It will have a soupy consistency when it is done.  (If you like, you can also add a splash of white or red wine during the last few minutes of cooking.)  Plate the cooked rotini.  Now, spoon the tomato mixture onto each plate over the pasta.  Be sure to capture the juices at the bottom of the saucepan as well (they are delicious).  Next top with feta and drizzle lemon juice over the top.  That's it folks. Grab a fork and ...

This probably makes about 3-4 servings, but my husband and I can (embarrassingly) polish this off with just the two of us.

Do you have a favorite pasta recipe?