Tag Archives: pasta

Summer Pasta Salad


Pasta Salad

Perfect for weekday lunches

I did it, y’all.  The research paper is done, the presentations are done, the reviews are done.  And now I have from now until August to work, read, write, blog and enjoy the pleasant Florida summer.

You’ll have to excuse my lack of posts over the last week.  It was a rough one.

But I’ll try to make up by posting some of the things we’ve been eating.

One of our favorite weekday lunch ideas is pasta salad, which we make in varying forms about every other week.  It’s great because we can make it on a Sunday afternoon and it’s good for several days of lunches – which means having less to do in the mornings which in turn means more time to sleep.

The recipe that follows was the mix that we happened to put together last week, but I encourage you to add in whatever you can find around.  Cool, crisp summery veggies seem to be the best compliment to the pasta, I think.  We like ours heavy on the veggies, so reduce those numbers if you like it more pasta-y.

Oh, and we added in a can of garbanzo beans, which don’t have a ton of flavor by themselves but add some good protein to the lunch.

What you need:

  • 1 cup diced carrots
  • 1 cup diced celery
  • 1 diced cucumber
  • 1 can chickpeas (drained and rinsed)
  • 1 cup of mozzarella cheese
  • 2 medium tomatoes, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 box multi-colored rotini pasta
  • 1 cup Italian dressing (store bought or make yo’ own)

Here’s what to do:

Step 1) Cook the pasta according to package directions.

Prepping the pasta salad veggies

Prepping the pasta salad veggies

Step 2) Dice the carrots, celery, bell pepper and tomatoes.  Drain and rinse a can of chickpeas.

Step 3) When the pasta is cooled, place in a  large serving bowl and add in the diced veggies and cheese.  Pour in the Italian dressing and stir to coat.

Baddabing, baddaboom.  Lunch for a few days.


Spaghetti with Crazy Sauce


Spaghetti with Crazy Sauce

Spaghetti with Crazy Sauce | Photo by HealthyandLazy

I’ve been inspired lately by the great pasta posts over at Brave New Food.

My wife spotted an interesting recipe in a Rachel Ray magazine and we thought we’d give it a try.  It’s got a funny little sauce, with garbanzo beans and jalapenos and curry powder, but at the end of the day it still fills you up like a plate of spaghetti should.

The beans replace the protein you would normally get from the meatballs, the curry powder gives it some great flavor and the jalapeno adds just the right amount of spice.

Top the pasta with goat cheese to add some creaminess and you’ve got yourself a good meal.

It was the perfect pick-me-up for what has been, so far, a rather bleak start to the baseball season by my hometown Tampa Bay Rays.  C’mon fellas.

Also, I’ve been trying to think of a slick way to get a picture of my dog into the blog, and so far, nothing has come to me – so I’m just going to kick off this recipe with his beautiful mug.

Oliver

Gimme my Dinna | Photo by HealthyandLazy

And now, on to the good stuff:

(again, recipe courtesy from the Rachel Ray Magazine May 2011 Issue)

Here’s what you need:

  • 1 lb whole wheat spaghetti
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 fresh chile pepper, seeded and chopped (I used a jalapeno)
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped

    Sauce ingredients

    Sauce Ingredients | Photo by HealthyandLazy

  • 2 tbsp mild curry powder
  • 1/2 cup vegetable stock
  • 1 can chickpeas, drained
  • 1 can (28 oz) crushed tomatoes
  • salt
  • olive oil
  • goat cheese for sprinkling
  • parsley for garnish

Here’s what to do:

Step 1) Cook the pasta according to the directions on the package.

Step 2) Meanwhile, in a big saucepan, begin cooking the diced onion,

Sauce

Simmerin Sauce | Photo by HealtyandLazy

garlic and chile pepper in a few splashes of olive oil.  After 2-3 minutes, add in curry powder and a dash of salt.  Let it sit for another minute or two, and then add in the veggie stock, tomatoes and chickpeas.

Step 3) Let it sit for 15-20 minutes until the liquid steams off a little, stirring occasionally.

Step 4) Add the sauce to the cooked pasta and toss.

Step 5) Top with goat cheese and parsley and eat it up.

I’d also like to announce, unrelated to this pasta, a new addition to my family – a new baby nephew, RJ.

RJ

Poker Face | Photo by HealthyandLazy


Homemade Spinach and Potato Gnocchi


 

Potato and Spinach Gnocchi

Potato and Spinach Gnocchi | Photo by HealthyandLazy

Saturday afternoon, not much going on, hanging out at the house watching movies and surfing the web and it hits me – tonight would be a great night for gnocchi.

When I was studying in Italy, I had some of the best gnocchi ever, specific meals that I still remember years later.  I’ve had it at restaurants and I’ve bought packaged gnocchi that is super quick to make at home.  BUT, until yesterday, I had never made it myself, from scratch.

So, I looked up some recipes online and set to work.  Turns out, just about every potato gnocchi recipe on the web is the same, but I liked this one because of the spinach (definitely a blog worth reading, too).

Let’s start with the positives – it was delicious, it was fun, it was filling.  I had a great time making the gnocchi.  I used every space in my kitchen and then some.

The downside?  It took forever.  I wasn’t exactly rushing through it, but the meal clocked in at just under 3 hours from start to delicious finish – it was like the Super Bowl of healthy/lazy cooking.  Oh, and I somehow managed to dust the kitchen, the dining room and my entire body in a fine layer of flour.  Perhaps careful cooking could avoid the flour problem, but it’s in my nature to be a little sloppy in the kitchen. Continue reading


Rigatoni with (veg) Sausage and Goat Cheese


 

Pasta with sausage and goat cheese

Pasta with sausage and goat cheese | Photo by HealthyandLazy

I can’t help but love pasta.  I come from an Italian family, with Italian grandmothers, and an English mother who has forsaken her own culinary tradition (can’t really blame her for moving away from English food, right?) and has joined the cult of the Italian.  I grew up on Italian food, and am delighted to roll out another Italian recipe today – and from the most authentic Italian establishment around, Carrabba’s.

Okay, so maybe it’s not authentic, but this pasta is darn good.  They don’t serve it there anymore, but there was a time, several years ago, when this was the dish to get.  I’ve never seen anything like it in any restaurant in Italy, and I’ve been to a bunch.  Oh well.  The concept is simple – pasta with Italian sausage (non-meat sausage in this case) and goat cheese.  The execution is just as simple.  This is a great weeknight dinner, quick and easy.

Continue reading


Fakin’ Bacon Spaghetti Carbonara


Vegetarian Spaghetti Carbonara

So good it should be illegal.

Here’s a family favorite for you.  Growing up, this was my go-to birthday dinner – only now, years later, I’ve learned to adapt the recipe to make it veg-friendly.  It’s not a light, summery pasta by any stretch of the imagination.  It’s moderately heavy and extremely flavorful.

In my travels, I regularly order it just to see how it stacks up against momma’s.  So far, my mom wins every time.  In Italy, it’s usually even egg-ier than the recipe here, but they typically use a lighter meat (prosciutto instead of bacon, usually).  So, experiment.  Try more eggs, less eggs, more parm, more bacon (or veggie bacon) – that’s what cooking is all about.  This is my favorite carbonara recipe, but it certainly doesn’t have to be yours.

Continue reading


%d bloggers like this: