Zucchini Sauce with Pasta

Recipe by Lucia Weiler RD;  www.WeilerNutrition.com

Bountiful zucchini is shredded and caramelized into a tasty pasta sauce with a little bit of milk and cheese. This pasta takes just minutes to make and uses the simplest ingredients including lots of zucchini. Bonus? It’s a recipe full of veggies and kid approved.
Serving Idea: Serve with your favourite protein such as lean chicken, fish or tofu.

Makes 4 servings      Prep time 10 min.    Cook time 10 min.

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups (250 g) dried penne pasta
  • 1 lb (450 g) zucchini (about 2-3 medium) trimmed and shredded or grated
  • 1 cup (160 g) large onion grated
  • 2  cloves garlic minced
  • 1 tbsp (15 ml) vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) milk (2 % MF)
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 tsp (1 mL)  freshly ground black pepper
  • pinch salt
  • pinch grated nutmeg (optional)
  • few leaves basil, chopped for garnish (optional)

Method:

  1. Bring to boil a large pot of water and cook pasta according to package directions. Just before draining, reserve 1 cup (250 mL) of the pasta cooking water. Drain.
  2. Shred or grate the onion and the zucchini.
  3. In a deep large skillet heat oil over medium heat. Add the shredded zucchini and onion. Stir and sauté until wilted (about 5 min). Cover the pan and sauté for a few more minutes until soft.
  4. Stir in the milk and bring to a gentle simmer.  Stir in the parmesan cheese, black pepper, nutmeg (if using) and salt to taste.
  5. Add the cooked pasta to the skillet with the zucchini sauce. Add 1/4 cup of reserved pasta water (or more if need) to thin the sauce.  Add the basil and sprinkle with hot pepper flakes (if using).
  6. Transfer to a bowl, serve and enjoy!

Recipe Notes:

Variations: Adult tastes may like adding ½ tsp crushed red pepper flakes.

Shredding veggies makes them appear like long strips while a grating them makes smaller fragments. If you prefer longer, textured veggies use a mandolin to shred instead of the standard household grater.

Nutrition Facts per one serving (290 grams) Calories 340; Fat 7 g; Carbohydrates 56 g; Protein 14 g; Source of 16 Vitamins and Minerals

Oven Baked Pasta

Melt in your mouth and full of veggies this oven baked pasta full is the comfort food of the day.  Inspired by a fave cookbook from Chef David Rocco, but veggie boosted to become a #dietitanapproved recipe. Here is how I made it:
👉INGREDIENTS
  • 1/2 lb (250g) rigatoni pasta ;
  • 3 tbsp (45 mL)  olive oil,
  • 1 large eggplant cut in small cubes ,
  • 1 leek sliced, 1 cup frozen spinach (150g) ;
  • 15 each – black olives & sundried tomatoes chopped,
  • 1 bottle (675 ml) tomato purée,
  • 1/2 lb (250 g) mozzarella cheese grated.
  • Hot pepper flakes (optional)

👉METHOD

  1. Cook pasta according to package direction (reserve 1/2 cup pasta water).
  2. In a pot heat olive oil, sautée leek, garlic; add eggplant & spinach cook for 10 min. Add tomato purée & cheese. (Rinse purée bottle w reserved pasta water & add to pot) Mix in cooked pasta & transfer the whole mixture to a shallow baking dish.
  3. Bake 20 min @ 400F.

    Serves 6. What’s your favourite pasta dish? #morethanfood #dietitiansarekey #cook #familymeals

Purple Cabbage & Potato Curry (Aloo Gobi)

  

Aloo Gobi is a classic Indian dish of potatoes and cauliflower. In this Canadian version inspired by Anita Stewart we swap in cabbage instead of cauliflower, but both can be called gobi!  Since I had purple cabbage on hand that’s what I used but any cabbage will do.  Either way it’s a one pot, super simple, comforting dish that’s full of flavour and ready in 30 minutes flat.  Serve it as a side dish with a slice of lean meat, chicken, fish or tofu. Scroll on for step by step on how to make it.

Ingredients:

Spice mixture: 

  • 1 tsp (5 mL) cumin
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) garam masala
  • ½ tsp ( 2mL) mustard seed (optional)
  • ½ tsp (2 mL) tumeric
  • ½ tsp (2 mL) cayenne pepper or hot pepper flakes

Veggies:

  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) vegetable oil
  • 1 medium cooking onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 4 cups (1L) potato cubed
  • 4 cups (1L) shredded cabbage
  • 1 tbsp (15mL) fresh ginger, grated
  • 1 cup (250 mL) water
  • Black pepper (ground)

Method:

  1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions and garlic and cook until fragrant for a few minutes.
  2. Add the spice mixture (cumin, garam masala, mustard seed, turmeric, and cayenne and cook until toasted, 1 minute more. )
  3. Add potatoes, ginger, cabbage and water.  Season with ground black pepper and pinch of salt to taste.
     
  4. Reduce heat and cook, covered, until potatoes and cabbage are tender, 15 minutes.
  5. Enjoy  with a slice of lean meat, chicken, fish or tofu.

 

 

 

 

 

How to peel a pomegranate

Are you looking to add a pop of colour & burst of flavour to your salads & roasted veggies? Pomegranate seeds are all the rage. Getting to the seeds can be messy, but by removing them under water you keep the seeds from taking over your kitchen. Scroll on for my tips on how to get to the best part of this tasty fruit.

  1. Cut off the top of the pomegranate with a sharp knife. (The top is end is crown shaped, not flat)
  2. Cut into the skin of the pomegranate from top to bottom and place pomegranate in a large bowl of water. Be sure its fully covered to keep the juices from splattering.
  3. Pull apart the fruit under water to expose the seeds and separate them from the membrane. The seeds tend to sink in water while the white membrane holding the seeds floats to the top. Just skim it off. Drain the seeds & enjoy as is, or add to salads & roasted veggies.

How do you like to eat pomegranate?

Googly eye strawberries

Fruit with eyes?  Now that changes everything! Kids love these fun and spooky treats all year round, but they are right on theme for Halloween. Strawberries are a tasty, healthy, convenient snack any time of day. You can also use them to add a burst of flavour in your snacks and meals. To make these funny faces, take some fresh @castrawberries and line them up with the green leafy part on top to make it look like tufts of ‘hair’.  Then, strategically place a couple of googly eyes (small sugar drops available in bulk food stores) on the strawberry’s ‘face’ and add a small chocolate chip ‘nose’.  You may want to make a slight cut in the berry and place the eyes and nose a little below the fruit’s surface to keep them in place. A tray of these googly eyed strawberry faces will disappear fast and bring smiles to everyone.  What’s your favourite googly eye fruit? #SnackOn8  #Dietitian