So, we did go camping this weekend which was great fun and we had a blast, although sleeping in a tent would probably have been more fun if we had an airbed..the hard ground made me compare myself to the Princess and the Pea. 🙂 and the excessive hiking I did because I was the “Josh machine” on day one led to bad and huge blisters. Oh well, at least I learned that fashion needs to take a back seat when hiking and skechers are not a substitute for sneakers. 🙂
We got back on Sunday afternoon and of course I needed to cook for the week as well as dinner. I decided to make a quick garden fresh pasta with whatever I had on hand.
This is a recipe I often make when I have little time or creativity at hand and have no motivation to look up a new recipe to try. I also usually have all I need at hand, or if not, know clever substitutions. Eitherways, this is more a method than a recipe and can be adapted to whatever ingredients you have at hand.
Here it is…my first recipe with pictures! 🙂
GARDEN FRESH PASTA
(Serves 6 or food for a week!!)
· 1 box of penne rigate or any short pasta of your choice. I used Healthy Harvest Whole Wheat Penne Rigate to up the health factor. I also like Penne rigate because I feel it holds up to sauce better than regular penne
· 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
· 4 cloves of garlic, smashed and minced
· 1 onion (any type) chopped fine
· 3 bell peppers (of different colors, if you like to up the pretty factor) (sliced)
· 1 head of broccoli, broken into florets
· 2 packs of sliced mushrooms (I used regular white and bella mushrooms)
· Italian seasoning (1 tsp)
· Salt (to taste)
· Pepper (1 tsp freshly ground)
· Red pepper flakes (1 tsp)
· 1 jar of any red pasta sauce you like. I used Classico Spicy Red Pepper pasta sauce
· 4 sundried tomatoes (soaked in hot water for 15 minutes and then chopped) (optional)
· 4 tomatoes (chopped) (optional)
· Dried basil (optional)
· Dried thyme (optional)
· Garlic salt (optional)
1. Boil water for the pasta following directions on the pack. Cover the pot to enable faster boiling (a trick I learnt from Rachael Ray! 🙂).
2. Meanwhile start working on the sauce by sautéing the garlic and onions in the oil in a separate pan.
3. After a minute or two, add the bell peppers and mix in.
4. Once the onions change color, add the broccoli and the mushrooms and mix everything.
5. Add the sundried tomatoes and regular tomatoes, if using.
6. Then add the seasonings and stir to mix.
7. Next, add the pasta sauce and the water used to soak the sundried tomatoes (if applicable)
8. Mix everything, wait for the sauce to come up to a boil and don’t forget to cook the pasta in the boiling water in the other pot following the directions on the pack.
9. Drain the pasta and add it to the sauce. Stir to mix and serve.
10. You could garnish with chopped fresh parley, if you have some, and parmesan cheese.
11. I served this with roasted green beans, oven “fried” baby potato wedges and roasted carrots.