Monday, September 28, 2009

Meatless Mondays - Creamy Pasta Fazool

I was reading Dan Brown's, The Lost Symbol *and I was struck by the fact that veganism seems to pass the prerequisites for an ideology to qualify as religion (disclaimer, I am not actually suggesting veganism is a religion, just bear with me...)

ABC. Assure, Believe, Convert.

Veganism assures good health, believes in compassion to animals, and seeks to convert non-vegans.

How do you convert the non-vegans, you ask? Be the example. But it's so hard, they say. Well, start small and try to pick one day a week to go meatless, or at least one meal a week. Meatless Mondays is a group seeking to get America to give up the meat for one day a week. Not strictly vegan, mind you (veg daily is on them about that,) but it's a good place to start.

So here's an EASY rainy Meatless Monday dinner of comfort food. Pasta! Ready in under 30 minutes. Beat that Rachel Ray!

I like my noodles pretty simple. This is a light and tomatoey sauce that whips up in a snap with canned tomatoes and chickpeas. Blended beans are a great way to sneak in some extra fiber and protein, and make the sauce extra rich and creamy. Serves 2-4.

Creamy Pasta Fazool
1/2 lb (half package) spaghetti
1 cup canned chickpeas (or cannellini, or navy, or anything similar)
1 15oz can (2 cups) diced tomatoes
1 tsp Italian seasoning
salt to taste (I used 1/2 tsp)
1 TBS olive oil
2 garlic cloves (smashed in a garlic press or grated on a micro plane-you want it really fine)
1-2 tsp sugar (optional)

Boil water in large pot.

While the pasta water is heating, blend chickpeas, tomatoes, and seasoning in blender. Since you're using canned ingredients, it may be salty enough already, if not, blend in a few pinches of salt and taste again.

Heat the olive oil in a large saute pan or sauce pan and add garlic. Saute garlic a minute or so, then add the blended tomato mixture and heat thoroughly. Give it another taste for salt as it heats up (careful, don't burn your tongue.) Also, depending on your canned tomatoes, you may want to add a little sugar (1-2tsp.) Totally optional, but it sometimes helps if the sauce is a little bland.

Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain pasta and add to sauce to incorporate.

Buon appetito!

*I don't want to discuss The Lost Symbol since it just came out and I don't want to spoil it for anyone. Recommended if you liked the DaVinci Code or enjoy a good thriller with a history lesson. I'm not going to call it quality literature.


Jenny said...

yum, never thought of blending chickpeas into tomato sauce

nora said...

Haha, that's funny b/c I thought that was squash or something because of the color...but it's just the combo of tomatoes and chickpeas I guess! Looks good though!