Merciful God, You are great in compassion and Your tenderness for us is without measure. We ask You to give us today our daily bread, and also provide for the needs of all of Your hungry children around the world. Through Christ Your Son and Our Lord. Amen.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Greek Pasta


I have so many recipes I want to share -- if only I had hours to sit at the computer. I'll keep collecting them, anyway, and when I can get them up, I will.

I prepared this dish a few weeks ago as a side with an oven-roasted chicken. I was attracted to the recipe because I love olives and sun-dried tomatoes, but I was afraid that the kids and Doug would find the flavors too strong. I was wrong. They loved it. In fact, they all said it tasted like restaurant food, which is really the ultimate compliment from them (sad, but true). The flavors of the olives, sun-dried tomatoes, herbs and garlic were just strong enough to balance the whole wheat pasta. Doug is really picky about whole grain pasta, but he said he really liked it in this dish. Though I served it as a side, it would be great as a meatless meal. It would also be awesome with a piece of grilled chicken sliced on top, or even some pan-sauteed shrimp. Yum!

This recipe came from Women Heart's All Heart Family Cookbook, my latest favorite. I love this cookbook because every recipe packs in as many heart-healthy ingredients as possible. This recipe has whole grains, olives and olive oil, garlic, spinach, tomatoes, and herbs -- which all contribute to lowering cholesterol and a healthier heart. It was easy and quick to make as well. I have just a few changes included below.

Greek Pasta
6 servings

12 oz. whole wheat pasta (I used penne)
2 T. extra virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced (I used two)
1/2 c. sun-dried tomatoes, chopped, soaked in water, drained
2 T. chopped fresh parsley
1 T. chopped fresh basil
10 oz. baby spinach, washed
4 oz. fat-free feta cheese (I used low-fat)
1/2 c. kalamata olives, pitted and chopped

Prepare pasta according to directions. Reserve 1 cup pasta water. Drain.

In the same pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook for 2 minutes -- do not brown. Add tomatoes, parsley, and basil, and cook, stirring occasionally, for two minutes longer. Add the pasta, spinach, cheese and olives, and toss to coat well. Add a little of the pasta water if necessary to moisten.

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Deborah said...

Oh wow, that looks delicious. Lovely photo too. I might try that next Friday, its all hubby's favourites and he's already moaning about not being able to have meat. He keeps reminding me he's not Catholic, I told him he's welcome to cook his own dinner on Fridays then. ;) But I KNOW this would be a hit.

Ed Schenk said...

Great recipe. It has all the flavors of Greece.

Crafty P said...

oh yum! that looks and sounds amazing! I'll have to make it for myself though as I know my children will not proclaim it tasting like "restaurant food"! thanks for posting so many wonderful recipes.