Comfort food! There’s surely always a need for such things, and moreso now that Man-thing is busy marking hundreds of exam papers and I’ve got assignments pouring out my ears. We rarely eat pasta but I figured it’s cold, miserable, and carbs are sometimes the only way to get the job of living done :p
Now that I’m back in old haunts at work I’m thinking a lot back to how I was when I was younger (diplomatically naughty) and how much things have changed. It’s not only appearance, attitude, but also habits and tastes. Pasta was the second thing I learnt how to make when I started university and lived by myself (sandwiches being the first), and before I knew what serving sizes were or why they existed a pot was pretty much all for me. Yum but ugh!This pasta, however…I could totally eat a whole pot. Over the course of a long, long evening, to be sure, but it’s stuffed full of protein, delicious and simple flavours, not to mention pasta. Carboloading has its time and place, which is now. In my belly. 😀
Anyway, the idea behind the name of this dish isn’t to give anyone funny ideas, but it’s just in line with my current mantra to “chill” and to get Man-thing to do the same. Sometimes it’s easy to get worked up, thanks to our personalities, so it takes a conscious effort to really take a deep breath and go forth. And onwards we go, face-first into pasta!Ingredients (serves 4 – 5)
- 1 leek, chopped finely
- Optional: 1 TBSP onion and/or garlic flakes
- 2 cups parsley and basil mix
- 1/3 cup pecans
- 2 TBSP nutritional yeast
- 2 tsp black pepper
- 2 – 3 tsp smoked paprika
- 2 – 3 tsp ground coriander
- 2 tsp onion powder
- 3 TBSP apple cider vinegar
- 3 TBSP lemon juice
- 3 – 4 tsp tabasco sauce (to taste, omit if you’re sensitive)
- 250g button mushrooms, diced finely
- 250g yellow patty pans, diced finely + steamed
- 1 cup cooked red lentils
- 400g can chopped tomatoes
- 1 cup yellow pepper, measured then chopped finely
- pasta of choice (can be gluten-free)
- In a large pot water sauté your leek and optional onion/garlic flakes for a few minutes, then add yellow patty pans and mushrooms, cooking over medium heat with the lid on for approximately 5 – 6 minutes.
- Meanwhile blend or finely chop and crush your parsely and basil with the nuts, then add (manually or otherwise) the lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, nutritional yeast and black pepper in a bowl or the food processor.
- Add the lentils, can of tomatoes, as well as the rest of the spices and easy pesto to the pot and stir over low heat for 5 minutes or so whilst you cook up the pasta of your choice.
- Drain pasta and either rinse or not (rinsing will get rid of excess starch but not rinsing helps the sauce stick better to the pasta). Add sauce to pasta pot, stirring, then serve.
One of Man-thing’s comments was “Mmmmm pasta FTW” because he’s apparently deprived and we do pasta too seldom, but if it tastes like this I may be convinced to do it more often. I’m so used to memories of boring undergraduate-style pasta, which was basically undercooked crunchy spaghetti with a can of veggies, but luckily simple is still best, albeit with fresh ingredients.Speaking of simple things, I am totally adore my little sister. She is now busy sending me “texts” via her mom and I got some “selfies” of her and her drawings. They’re leaving on July 1 for Morocco and I think I’m going to shatter completely because she’s one of the things that makes me bubble over with love. It’s amazing to think that I have a little 6 year old sister in the world, and even if I don’t get to see her as much as I’d like, just knowing she exists is pure magic. When I was a twerpy teen I never thought I’d be blessed with such a family, and luckily for me I have my other family (Man-thing’s are mine now, whether they like it or not!) to see me through this ridiculousness. ❤
Oh, and if you’re curious as to the lack of WIAW, I was good and took (admittedly terrible) photos all day long, and then come dinner time we got hit by loadshedding and I just gave up altogether. Seriously, I didn’t think anyone wanted to see food by headlamp!
What’s your favourite pasta dish?
What were some of the first meals you learnt to make?