Monday, July 27, 2009

Pasta you can't possibly regret eating

I loooove pasta. Beyond belief love it. I could eat it all day long, but that would obviously be a bad thing, given so many carbs.

Good thing for me, I developed my own seriously good for you pasta recipe years ago that I can eat any time and as often as I'd like, given how healthy it is. I also love that it changes every time I make it, depending on what's in season and in my fridge. Great way to use your backyard or farmer's market veggies!

The roots in this particular pasta, I must confess, started with an old and dear friend, Phil, though my version(s) are quite different (wanted to include full disclosure!).

I don't actually have precise measurements - make this in the volume you're used to/need for yourself and/or your family. The magic comes in what you add, not the pasta noodles or the base sauce (which you can make yourself using your own recipe or your favorite store/artisanal sauce).

So, without further ado:

Whole wheat linguine
Your own homemade sauce, or your favorite store bought, farmer's market, etc. sauce
Local, organic, fresh veggies

Accoutrements like:
  • marinated olives (I love fat local olives marinated in lemon and garlic)
  • capers
  • toasted pinenuts (trust me - delish)
  • cooked beans (lentils, garbanzo/chickpeas, scarlet runner beans or fava are particular faves for me)
  • cheese (my faves are crumbled feta cheese or shaved parmesan)
  • mushrooms (grilled portabello all chopped up, sauted or fresh crimini, etc.)
Fresh herbs:
  • basil leaves (roll up like a cigar, slice very very thinly)
  • chopped up italian flat leaf parsley
  • whatever else you have on hand that you love
Meat (optional):
  • turkey meatballs or crumbled ground turkey, cooked
  • artisanal sausages, sliced thin (you can almost always find delicious sausages at your local farmer's market)
  • clams, shrimp or other shellfish (fully cooked)
A few extra spices/flavorings:
  • Red chili flakes, to taste
  • Fresh cracked pepper
  • A few crushed cloves of garlic
  • Lemon or orange zest (trust me, but don't use too much)
  • A splash of fresh lemon juice (really brightens things up)
So, cook your pasta, and if you're including veggies that need a blanching, add them to your pasta water for the last 30-45 seconds of cooking. Drain the whole pot, and immediately toss with lots of really good extra virgin olive oil. Add you extra spices and flavorings, give it a good toss, then your veggies, again toss. Add your meat/shellfish, toss. Finally, your sauce. You can add your cheese now or later when you serve.

I made this last night with an organic (but store bought sauce), whole wheat linguine, parmesan, pepper, chile flakes, parsley, asparagus, zucchini and baby patty pan squash. Delish! I often enjoy over a bed or arugula or spinach, and have been known to add quinoa before adding the sauce.

Now I'm hungry for more! I hope you enjoy this if you try it out. :)


heather jane said...

Have you any idea how envious I am that you have LOCAL olives? Seriously!!! And citrus. What I wouldn't do for a few citrus trees in my back yard.

This is a frequent meal at our house...pasta ala Phil(now me). It's all about the fridge clean out with that guy.

STEPHANIE. said...

ohh yummy!!! :)

. Phydeaux . Phydelle . said...

Heather, that's pretty funny, OR it's proof positive that Everything But The Kitchen Sink dishes (one of my specialites) work! I'm still using this one, 20 (good lord, TWENTY) years later, too! :)

Summer said...

Oh my goodness! I'm so hungry right now and this just put me over the edge! YUM