Monday, September 7, 2009

End of Summer Pasta!

Hello, Happy Labor Day to everyone! About to make up some chicken burgers and the leftover veggies from last night that are in the recipe I'm sharing with you today. Growing up I was always a big pasta eater. I would have it with sugar and cottage cheese, paprika and butter, marinara, etc. It was my go to meal, with not the healthiest options. Well 3 years ago when I wanted to lose weight, pasta was something I cut out. Since then I'm not a huge pasta eater like I once was. I usually have it once in a while, and I don't miss it much.

Now my boyfriend on the other hand is a huge pasta eater! So we shall see how that works when he gets back from deployment next year. haha. I always make him pasta, but I make sure we have salads too! For dinner I decided to roast up a bunch of summer veggies, drizzled in enough olive oil to coat the pasta. It was simple, delicious and healthy. I'm trying alternatives to replace dairy, wheat and gluten. I find I feel a whole lot better when I don't have milk or wheat. Sometimes I will have it but I always try to look for other options. I opted for a quinoa pasta, while my mom had the whole wheat pasta from Barilla. Which is also a really hearty pasta. Onto my quinoa pasta. I was worried I would not like it because I once tried brown rice pasta and could not swallow it! I'm excited to say that quinoa pasta is amazing! It cooks quickly so you have to keep checking on it to make sure it won't be too mushy. I took my quinoa pasta off the stove and drained it in a colander when it had a slight bite but was still chewy and not mushy. I figured it would continue cooking anyways while I waited for the veggies to finish. I bought my quinoa pasta from the bulk bin area in Wholefoods. I got a really good deal on it too. Buying items from bins are good deals, never realized it till recently!

I haven't had elbow shaped pasta in forever!
This was the quinoa pasta.
For a twist on my pasta I thought zesting some lemon on top would bring out new flavors and really cleanse the palate. I thought it was delicious with this meal, really brighten up the plate and my mouth! Plus you can't go wrong with basil. Not only does it smell and taste delicious, it makes the pasta presentation pretty too!  

End of Summer Pasta By Fallon 

Zucchini, cut into circles
Yellow squash, cut on an angle
Grape tomatoes (I like Cherubs, really sweet), leave whole
Sweet onion, sliced
Garlic, smashed ( I had about 7 cloves :X)
Extra virgin olive oil
Dried oregano
Pasta (Your favorite kind!)
Zest of a lemon
Fresh basil (definitely don't use dry here)  
Parmigiano- reggiano (Your favorite kind, although PR is the best)

Preheat the oven between 475- 500 degrees. You will want to use a large baking sheet. Just make sure it something you use for savory cooking and not baking your cookies on! Next wash all your veggies and dry them well. Cut them up and toss them on the baking sheet. Slice your onions and top on the veggies. Take the garlic and smash up the cloves and spread across the veggies. Next drizzle on some EVOO, till your desire. I made sure everything was coated but also a little extra for when putting on top for the pasta, so the pasta doesn't stick. Probably 3 tablespoons. Sprinkle on the dried oregano and then toss everything together. Let the veggies and flavors marry. Once the oven is heated up, put in oven and let them cook for a good 15 minutes before opening up the oven. Afterward you can toss the veggies again, and put back in oven for another 5-7 minutes.

While the veggies are cooking make sure your pasta water is boiling. Season water with salt before the boil. Add pasta to boiling water and mix. You want to make sure your pasta is al dente. Mushy pasta is bah!! Check at around 6 minutes, it should still be hard but at least you will know how much time is left. Which is about1-2 minutes. Once pasta is done, drain water and set back in the pot while you wait for the veggies to finish.
For the toppings, make sure your basil is chiffonade. I like a lot of basil on my pasta, so you may want to cut extra. Have your zester and/or grater ready to top the pastas.

Set pasta in bowl and once the veggies are done. Top on top of pasta. Zest over some lemon, sprinkle with basil and grate your cheese on top. Then it time to serve and enjoy!

A bowl full of yumminess. I opted for extra 
veggie and basil, and less pasta!
You will love this! It so fresh and light. The roasted tomatoes just pop in your mouth and release this sweetness of them. You have to try it! This would also go well with some sauteed or grilled chicken if you want some protein to the dish. I'm not a seafood eater but shrimp would work too. I spent a total of 45 minutes in the kitchen from prepping, cutting, and cooking. It not a 30 minute meal but you get my point! Again on measurements I kind of just winged it. I think I had 3 large yellow squash, 5-6 zucchinis, half a large sweet onion, several handfuls of the tomatoes, and I just drizzled my oil till I thought it was enough. This dish will serve 4-5 people easily, probably with leftovers still. It was only my mom and I that ate this, so we have a TON of veggies for today (yum yum). I'm serving it with some chicken burgers, that are like the turkey burgers I made. Wholefoods had their free-range chicken breast ground up, and this is usually rare to find it so I had to pick it up and make burgers tonight!

Hey it is Labor Day after all! Might even have a heiney while I'm grilling. ;) Have a great rest of the evening,



Katrina said...

Yum, that pasta looks great!

Pam said...

Everything I love tossed together in a bowl. It looks great.

Anonymous said...

Wow - those vegetables look delicious! I'll have to try that recipe.
To answer your question, my calzone contained parmesan (1 c), ricotta (2 c), and mozzarella cheese (1 c). You can add whatever you'd like. I just followed the recipe. If you use spinach, make sure you press all the water out.
Thanks for reading! -Mandy

Jennifer said...

I love roasted vegetables and this pairs so well mixed in this pasta! Lovely!