veggies

Summer Veggies and Lentil Fusilli

I know I have been MIA. We have been in the middle of a move and this crazy lady thought she would somehow be able to cook and or have the time to stop and write a blog post. That didn't happen :) I did; however, manage to throw together a delicious and easy dinner the other night. It is quick, loaded with plant-based protein and veggies. It is the perfect Summer evening pasta. I am happy to be back up and running. Stay tuned for some exciting content in the next couple weeks. 

 

A little about my pasta journey:  Living in Italy greatly influenced and changed the way I make Italian food. One of my most favorite ways to cook pasta is by adding lentils. It adds protein, texture and a delicious earthy flavor. Italians love to lace their pasta with beans. Trust me on this one!

Ingredients:

  • 12 oz gluten free pasta
  • 2 small or 1 large zucchini
  • 2 cups chopped kale
  • 1 cup steamed lentils
  • 1/4 cup kalamata olives, chopped
  • Zest and juice from half a lemon 
  • 1 cloves garlic thinly sliced
  • Chili flakes
  • Salt to taste
  • Pecorino cheese (optional, but oh so delicious
  • Micro greens
  • drizzle of good quality Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO)

Bring a large saucepan with a small handful of course salt to boil. Add the pasta (I used this one). Cook until tender, drain and reserve 1 cup pasta water. 

Thinly slice the garlic. Cut zucchini down the middle lengthwise, turn so that flat side is on your cutting board and cut in half lengthwise again. Cute quarters into 1/2 inch slices. Wash, stem and chop the kale.

Heat a cast iron skillet on medium heat until hot, add 1 T olive or avocado oil and garlic. Stir until fragrant and add zucchini, a sprinkle of salt and dried red pepper flakes. Cook until softened and add lentils. Cover with a lid and let steam until zucchini is very soft. Add kale and cover with lid. Cook until kale is bright green and slightly wilted. Add lemon zest and cook until fragrant. Add 1/2 cup pasta water and cook until reduced by at least 1/2. Squeeze in juice from half a lemon, kalamata olives and drained pasta. 

Plate the pasta, drizzle with a generous amount of EVOO. Top with shaved pecorino and micro greens of choice (I used pea shoots)

Summertime Cast-Iron Asparagus and Leek Shoots

The time of year when it's too hot to turn your oven on has arrived. This is when I start getting creative in the kitchen because I want to eat delicious homemade food, but it's not worth the sweltering heat radiating through our apartment. We usually end up eating a lot of salads, sautéed veggies and pastas. The other night I threw together some veggies that needed to be used up from the farmers market and it was a winner! I served it along side a light pasta. Needless to say, my husband and I were satisfied!

This recipe is super versatile. You could switch up the veggies or the dressing depending on your mood and what it in your kitchen. I am a big believer in using what you have so if you don't have one of the ingredients, don't run to the store, just find something in your pantry that works. 

Ingredients:

  • 1 bunch asparagus
  • 1 bunch leek shoots (I found these beauties at the farmers market. You could also use garlic shoots or green beans. Whatever tickles your fancy. :) )
  • 1 T avocado oil
  • Salt to taste

Dressing:

  • 1 T mustard of choice ( I used Trader Joe's dijon)
  • 1 T good quality olive oil
  • 1 T red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 T honey (this one is magical)- adjust depending on your liking
  • 1/2 tsp Philosophie Green Dream Superfoods powder (optional, yet delicious!)
  • salt & pepper to taste

Wash asparagus and leek shoots and cut off any tough ends. Cut into 1.5 inch pieces. Heat a cast iron skillet on medium heat until pan is hot. Add oil and veggies to the pan. You want a nice sizzle so if they aren't hissing, turn the heat up a bit. Season with salt and stir every few minutes until you start to see seer marks. If you like your veggies al dente, they are done. If you would like them a bit softer, add 2-3 tablespoons of filtered water to the pan and cover until steamed to your liking. Remove from heat and season with pepper.

In a small bowl, whisk together ingredients for the dressing. Adjust seasoning to your liking. 

Transfer veggies to a serving bowl and top with the dressing. This can be served warm, at room temperature or cold. It is delicious, light and the perfect side to a light Summer dinner.