Pasta y Fagioli: on a Plate

Remember the bartering story?  Well… I’m still reaping the rewards of my trade.  Although it might seem like we eat a lot of carbs (pasta, really – and that scone from earlier on), one box of pasta lasts two people four meals.  Seems pretty reasonable, think – assuming it’s bulked up with some vegetables and – the ever popular food for your heart: beans.

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So, since there’s always a story behind the recipe – this one began from my wanting a sort of pasta y fagioli type of lunch.  And so, I bought kidney beans and some Roma tomatoes.  And then an onion and some kale.  After the baguette (for tomorrow’s on-the-road lunch) and the half pound of bean sprouts for tonight’s peanut satay noodles, my total was a whopping $5.24.  And, there will be leftovers for the road.  Yes!  Cheap and healthy – 1, Succumbing to fast food – 0.

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It should come as no surprise to you that I changed my mind halfway through the walk “home” from the grocery store.  And, instead of making a soup – made a meal sans broth.

Still yum; soup or pasta, or pasta soup.

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Plated Pasta y Fagioli

2-3 ounces thin spaghetti, capellini, or angel hair pasta – broken into thirds and cooked (save about 1/2 cooking pasta water and set aside after draining noodles)
2 Tablespoons oil, divided (I used coconut oil)
1/2 cup cooked kidney beans (or red beans; feel free to use cannellini), drained
1/2 cup sweet onion, chopped
1 clove fresh garlic, smashed with the flat side of a Chef’s knife and chopped
1 cup kale stems, chopped
3 Roma tomatoes, diced
1 cup kale leaves, chopped
1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1/4 teaspoon crushed (dried) sage leaves
pinch crushed red pepper
1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
salt
and pepper, to taste

Directions: add 1 Tablespoon oil to drained pasta and stir to coat.  Set aside.

Place a large skillet over medium heat.  Add remaining oil and onion.  Cook until tender.  Add garlic, kale stems, tomatoes, thyme, sage, and crushed red pepper and cook until kale stems are tender.  Stir in kale leaves, cover, and remove from heat.  Allow to sit (covered) until kale leaves are wilted and tender.  Stir in vinegar, noodles, and season with salt and pepper.

Makes: 4 servings

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