Fresh Tomato, Sundried & Angel Hair Pasta

Fresh Tomato, Sundried & Angel Hair Pasta
(Serves 6-8)

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I hope everybody enjoyed their Valentine’s Day this year. This year I put this recipe together for its simplicity and burst of flavors. A savory dish that you can make in 10 minutes or less so you can enjoy the majority of your evening with the ones you love. Last year I made: Rooted Basmati Rice with Herb Infused Broth and Effortless Chocolate Cake on Valentine’s Day and spent a lot of time in the kitchen roasting, infusing and baking. So this year I decided to take it light and I hope you did too! Enjoy. 🙂

Ingredients:
1lb Angel Hair Pasta
2-3 Tsp Fresh Minced Garlic
½ Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil, good quality
1 Handful Fresh Parsley, chopped
Salt/Pepper to Taste
½ Cup Pine Nuts, toasted
1 (2.8oz) Sun-Dried Tomato Paste
1 Medium Vine-Ripe Tomato, chopped (or 2 Small)

Directions:
-Prepare Angel Hair according to package (boil in salted water for 4-5 minutes until al dente).
-In a large pan, heat olive oil over medium-low heat then add Garlic. Heat garlic for a couple minutes then add tomatoes, sun-dried tomato paste and toss in drained cooked pasta.
-Toss in fresh parsley and pine nuts before serving. Enjoy!

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(Notes:)
-My teaspoons of garlic are ‘heaping’ and the better the quality of evoo the better the flavor.
-Instead parsley try using basil. Basil pairs nicely with tomatoes and garlic and would work lovely in this dish also.

I also made black pepper crusted tofu with corn salsa and earth balance garlic bread. Blog post of corn salsa coming soon. My amazing husband pictured below ready for dinner. I love him so…. Happy Valentine’s Day! Xoxo

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Tabbouleh with Pearl Couscous (Israeli Couscous)

Tabbouleh with Pearl Couscous (Israeli Couscous)
(Serves 8) ~ Vegan, Soy-Free, Dairy-Free, [Gluten-Free Option: swap Couscous for Quinoa
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When I think of Tabbouleh I can’t help but think of the beautiful mint in this recipe! I love mint as soon as I smell mint it is so nostalgic for me. When my brother and I were little my mother use to walk us to school and occasionally we came across wild mint growing along the way. Mint that she would pick and make tea from. Maybe I would about 6 or 7 years old but it was such a simple little pleasure that I always reminisce about when I smell mint. 🙂 I sure did love that tea.
Tabbouleh is such a beautiful dish. Keeping with the Arabic theme I chose to make this recipe with Israeli Couscous (pearl couscous) instead of the traditional bulgur. If I’m being honest I’ve never been a fan of traditional couscous, mostly because of the texture. However, the texture of pearl couscous is a bit more pleasing to me. It tastes like little puffy balls that are nutty and delicate in flavor which seems to be more palatable for me. Josh of course described it as mini gnocchi balls – I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned before that he’s obsessed with gnocchi.
This attractive dish encompasses tri-color pearl couscous, mint, parsley and tomatoes to name a few of the ingredients. The couscous can be toasted if you’d like too. Before adding to the liquid you can lightly toast it in a pan until golden brown, similar to toasting pine nuts. Alternatively, the couscous can be swapped altogether for quinoa to make a gluten-free version of this dish. The parsley, mint and lemon in this dish are so refreshing and the colors in this salad make for an appealing salad, side or entrée. Enjoy!

Mint and mommy – xoxo!
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Ingredients:
2 Cups Pearl Couscous (Israeli Couscous)
2 ½ Cups Water
1 Bunch of Curly Parsley, chopped
¼ Cup Fresh Mint (about 50 leaves), chopped
4 Scallions (white/light green parts), chopped
½ Pint of Cherry Tomatoes, sliced in half (about 20-25)
2 Lemons (juice of both lemons and zest of 1)
½ Tbsp Garlic, minced
1/3 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 Tsp Salt
1 Tsp fresh Ground Pepper
1 Tbsp Capers, optional

Parsley is so good for you!
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Directions:

-In a sauce pan bring water to boil. Add the Pearl Couscous then bring back to boil. Stir together, cover and reduce heat to a simmer. Continue to simmer for about 10 minutes until all the liquid has absorbed. (You can swap liquid for vegetable broth too if you’d like).
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-Combine remaining ingredients and toss together. I used a fork as the couscous can tend to be a bit sticky. Using the fork helped fluff and combine the ingredients best.
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-Refrigerate until chilled or overnight to serve cold. You can also enjoy this dish warm.

Enjoy!
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Tabbouleh with Pearl Couscous

  • Servings: 8 ~ Vegan
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients:
2 Cups Pearl Couscous (Israeli Couscous)
2 ½ Cups Water
1 Bunch of Parsley, chopped
¼ Cup Fresh Mint (about 50 leaves), chopped
4 Scallions (white/light green parts), chopped
½ Pint of Cherry Tomatoes, sliced in half (about 20-25)
2 Lemons (juice of both lemons and zest of 1)
½ Tbsp Garlic, minced
1/3 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 Tsp Salt
1 Tsp fresh Ground Pepper
1 Tbsp Capers, optional

Directions:
-In a sauce pan bring water to boil. Add the Pearl Couscous then bring back to boil. Stir together, cover and reduce heat to a simmer. Continue to simmer for about 10 minutes until all the liquid has absorbed. (You can swap liquid for vegetable broth too if you’d like).
-Combine remaining ingredients and toss together. I used a fork as the couscous can tend to be a bit sticky. Using the fork helped fluff and combine the ingredients best.
-Refrigerate until chilled or overnight to serve cold. You can also enjoy this dish warm. Enjoy!

Cabbage and Fennel Slaw/Salad

Fennel, Apple and Cabbage oh my! This recipe is fantastic year round. The crisp and crunch makes me think of summer in these cold winter months. Fennel is so aromatic; the wonderful smell instantly hits you upon cutting in, with liquorice notes it tastes how it smells in my opinion. Fennel is related to celery, dill and carrots (aromatic plants) so why not add them all to the recipe. The dill and celery seeds in this recipe add to the flavorful taste. Vitamin C, Fiber & Potassium, great for immunity!

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Ingredients:

3 Carrots, shredded

1 Fennel Bulb, cored and finely sliced/shredded

1 head Cabbage, cored and finely sliced/shredded

½ Red Onions, sliced finely

1 Granny Smith Apple, julienne

2/3 Cup Vegenaise (vegan mayo)

1/3 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Juice of 1 Small Orange or ½ Large Orange

2 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar

½ Tsp Dill Weed

½ Tsp Celery Seed

½ Tsp Salt

½ Tsp Pepper

2 Tbsp Blue Agave

¼ Cup Sliced Almonds, toasted

Directions:

As noted above, core the Fennel Bulb and Cabbage then slice/shred finely – See Note*. To a large bowl, add sliced red onions and shredded carrots – I use a box grater for the carrots. Julienne the Granny Smith Apple and add to the bowl; I use organic apples and keep the skin on.

-In a small bowl whisk the: Vegenaise, Olive Oil, Orange juice (fresh squeezed), seasonings and Agave.

-Lightly toast the sliced almonds in a pan

-Drain the sliced fennel and cabbage (I use my salad spinner). Add to large bowl with Carrots, Onion and Apple. Add dressing and toasted almonds then toss together to coat. Refrigerate for about 30 mins. before serving. Toss again before serving up.

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*Note/Tip: After I slice the Fennel bulb and Cabbage I let them hang out in my salad spinner with ice-cold water. Leaving them in the ice cold water while you prepare your other ingredients will keep them crisp and crunchy.