Tag Archives: Pasta

Quick Lunch Series: Red Lentil Spaghetti

Last time I was in the grocery I had picked up some organic red lentil spaghetti. Although my original thought was to use it in a traditional pasta recipe, I changed my mind when I came across this twist on one pot Enchilada Pasta.


I did not have all the ingredients used in that recipe. As always, I improvised as I cooked. In the end, turned out great. Here’s how I made mine.


1/2 packet of organic barilla pasta

1 cup of frozen Santa Fe vegetable mix

1 green bell pepper

2 Roma tomatoes

some onion and garlic

some taco sauce

roasted corn and black bean cotija cheese salsa

sour cream


salt to taste

chili lime and taco seasoning

olive oil

Heat some oil in a pan. Add onion, and garlic and fry for 1-2 minutes. Add peppers and tomato and continue frying for a few minutes. Add salt and other seasoning, and sauces. Mix well. Add pasta whole or break into chunks. Add water and bring to a boil. Reduce flame to medium, cover,  and continue cooking for about 20 minutes or until the pasta cooks and water evaporates. Add sour cream and cheese and continue cooking for another few minutes.


Sprinkle some cheese and serve warm. Makes about 2 servings.

Quick Lunch Series: Greek Chickpea-Mango Pasta Salad

I normally prefer to use dry beans in my cooking. But this requires plenty of lead time to plan, soak, and cook the beans before you can use them. For this reason, I do keep a few cans of organic beans around. This is especially useful when I am stumped for what to prepare for the next day office lunch. This one is adapted from here. I had no artichoke hearts, instead, I swapped in some mango. Also, I decided to use more chickpeas and less pasta.

photo 3

1 can garbanzo beans (aka Chickpeas)
1/2 cup whole wheat elbow pasta
1/2 mango chopped
1/2 cup black olives sliced
1/2 cup feta cheese
4-6 sun dried tomatoes sliced
1-2 tbsp sliced red onion (optional)
1 tsp dried oregano
a few red pepper flakes
salt and fresh ground pepper

Cook the pasta according to directions. Drain and set aside to cool.

Drain and rinse the chickpeas.

In a large bowl, toss together the chickpeas, pasta, sun dried tomatoes, red onion, mango, olives, artichokes if using, dried oregano, red pepper flakes, salt and fresh ground pepper. Use oil from artichokes or sun dried tomatoes if using oil soaked varieties. Else drizzle some olive oil.

photo 2Chill or serve immediately topped with some fresh feta cheese. Delicious!

Tomato Pesto Pasta Sauce

This sauce is simple and delicious.


2, 15 ounce cans, Italian spiced or plain, dice Tomatoes, whole tomatoes or puree or garden tomatoes in the summer

Pinch of oregano, maybe 1/2 teaspoon

Pinch of red pepper flakes

Pinch of chili powder

A few grinds of fresh pepper or a pinch of ground pepper

One clove of garlic

Pinch of brown sugar

Dash of cinnamon

Pinch of salt

Dribble of Olive oil

A few tablespoons of pesto, pre-made or homemade

Start by pouring the tomatoes with juice into a sauce pan and blend with a hand blender pureeing the tomatoes. You could also use a potato masher or a fork to smash the tomatoes.

Heated the sauce at medium-high heat until simmering and then turn down the heat. Add all of the ingredients except the pesto and simmer while your choice of pasta or ravioli cooks. Turn the heat off the sauce and stir in the pesto. Taste and adjust seasoning. Just as pasta is finishing up turn the heat back on your sauce and give it a quick warm up. Delicious on vegetables, chicken, fish, rice, pasta, raviolis….ice cream..nah….if you try the last one let me know how it is….

Top with grated hard cheese of your choice or gorgonzola. I found a new one at Traders…an aged gouda that is similar to parmasean….LOVE IT!


Mamma’s Spaghetti w/Meat Sauce


(Camille–all measurements are approximate…change at will!)


2-3 T olive oil

1 small yellow onion, diced

1/2-1 green pepper, diced

1-2 cloves garlic, diced

1 lb hamburger (or 1/2 lb turkey burger and 1/2 lb hamburger or all turkey)

1/2 cup red wine or 1/8 cup vinegar

1/2 T oregano leaves (dried)

1/2 T basil leaves (dried)

1 T dried parsley

1 T white or brown sugar

1/2 t cinnamon

salt and pepper to taste

Large can diced tomatoes

8-oz can tomato sauce

6-oz can tomato paste

tomato paste can of water


Saute onions and pepper in olive oil for 2-3 minutes. Add garlic for 30 seconds. Add meat and cook until browned. Then add red wine or vinegar. Add oregano, basil, parsley, sugar, and cinnamon…salt and pepper to taste. Stir for 30 seconds or so. Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste and water. Cook for 30-90 minutes. Add more spices to taste. Cook spaghetti and serve with sauce.


Nice and thick.

Love you Mom!!!