Who doesn’t LOVE a healthy pasta dish?! This pasta couldn’t be anymore healthy. There’s no cream or cheese. I only added a tablespoon of butter while sauteing the veggies – which is completely optional! Last weekend I somehow sweet talked my husband into eating vegan with me for ONE week. I’ve been wanting to try this out for some time now… I’ve been playing around with different baked goods that are vegan and we already eat a TON of veggies with every meal… so, I really didn’t think it would be a big deal to give up meat, dairy, and cheese?! Butter and half and half (for my coffee) is something I’m going to have to work on… but giving up meat for me was going to be easy. Once my husband agreed I was super excited! I got on Pinterest and found a bunch of new vegan recipes…. we went to the grocery store and got a bunch of veggies and fruits… I was ready to take on our vegan challenge for the week!
Monday night I made a Thai Vegetable – let’s call it Stew…It was basically a whole bunch of veggies soaked in a delicious Thai sauce – YUM! I served it with some organic Jasmine rice and a great big salad. I was totally satisfied and happy. My husband, on the other hand, could not stop thinking about the meat. Throughout the whole dinner he kept saying, “This is going to be rough…. I don’t know if I can go with out meat? What am I going to do for protein ‘when’ I work out?” I had an answer for every question. Good answers, too. Let’s move forward to Tuesday night… My husband: “Are we eating meat tonight?” Me: “Do you want meat, Omar?” (in that totally annoyed voice) Him: “Yes, please.” Me: BIG eye roll…. “OK. BIG sigh.” And that was the end of our vegan adventure.
So, this Kitchen Sink Pasta is what I made so that my man had a little meat with his dinner. If you did the math – we went vegan for a whole 24 hours. ONE WHOLE DAY. That’s it. I know… I could’ve gone on alone and continued by myself. And honestly – I should have. Actually, I think that when we get back from our little mini vacation this weekend, I’m going to give it a go again…with or without him! Because of all the veggies we had bought, I threw a lot in this dish. Add whatever you love. I like more veggies than pasta….so when I added the pasta to the veg – I didn’t use all of it…probably about 3/4 of it. Use however much you want! Make it your own! This is just an idea of what I thought was a really good, summertime dinner!
Yields: 4 servings
- 1 tbsp olive oil plus 1 tbsp butter
- lots of garlic (I did a heaping tbsp)
- 1 onion, sliced or diced
- 2-3 carrots, sliced
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half
- 2 cups roasted broccoli florets
- 1 cup mushrooms, sliced
- 1/2 cup organic vegetable stock
- zest and juice of 1 lemon
- 1/4 – 1/2 cup fresh parsley and cilantro, chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 lb box of your favorite pasta (mine was organic and vegan)
- sliced grilled chicken, optional
- sprinkle of Parmesan cheese, optional
- In a big saute pan or Dutch oven – on medium-high heat – add the fat and let it get shimmering hot. Add the onion and garlic and cook until translucent.
- Next, add the carrots and mushrooms. While the veggies soften, I roasted my broccoli in the oven for about 10 minutes and cooked my pasta.
- IF you’re serving a protein with this, start cooking it too while the pasta is cooking. You’ll have a lot going on for a few minutes, but it’s all going to come together in one big pot at the very end.
- Back to the veggies – add the stock, lemon zest and juice, tomatoes, parsley and cilantro. Stir until everything is well incorporated together. Add the pasta to the pan and give it one more stir. Season liberally with salt and pepper.
- Slice or dice your protein up – add it to the pasta and plate it up! Boom!!! A healthy, super easy and flavorful meal is ready to eat. ENJOY!!!