Monday, April 20, 2009

Pasta with Cannellini Beans & Sun Dried Tomatoes

At the end of the month, everyday is Paper Chef around here because I need to whip up something that tastes good with whatever is still available in our storage. I also wanted to use a calcium rich ingredient in my pasta sauce since I've been paranoid about having a calcium deficiency these I used Cannellini beans (white kidney beans).

Yes - I'm a bit of a hypochondriac and my lastest pet worry is osteoporosis so I've been monitoring my calcium intake everyday making sure I get my 1000 mg from natural foods daily.

Call me silly but I guess it's better to be careful than sorry!

Pasta with Cannellini Beans & Sun Dried Tomatoes


Penne (enough for 2 people)

2 Cups Cooked Cannellini Beans

2 Cloves Garlic (finely chopped)

2 Tomatoes (from a can - I had leftovers but feel free to use fresh tomatoes)

A Handful of Parsley (chopped)

1 Tsp Fresh Rosemary (chopped)

Salt (to taste)

Black Pepper (to taste)

Chili (to taste)

4 Sun Dried Tomatoes (hydrated and sliced thinly)

4 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Step 1: Heat the olive oil in a deep pan (so not a frying pan) and when the oil is hot, take it off the heat and throw in the garlic and let it sizzle and release its aroma.

Step 2: Throw in the chopped tomatoes and any juices that may have come from it, then put it back on the stove top at medium heat.

Step 3: Once it's bubbling add the Cannellini beans and rosemary and continue to cook for about 30 minutes, adding water if necessary. Remember this is a pasta sauce so you don't want it to be too dry.

Step 4: Stir often and let the beans break down so that what you're stirring looks like a nice bean & tomato puree. If for some reason your beans do not break down at all, you can put it through a blender but this shouldn't be necessary if you soaked and cooked your own beans. Canned beans may be more firm and may require some blender/food processor action.

Step 5: Season it with salt, chili pepper and black pepper, let it cook a little more, and set it aside to cool down a bit.

Step 6: Boil the penne until it's cooked (al dente).

Step 7: While the penne is boiling braise the sun dried tomatoes in some olive oil in another pan and then set aside. Don't burn them.

Step 8: When the pasta is almost ready, mix the sun dried tomatoes and fresh parsley into the sauce.

Step 9: After draining the cooked pasta, put it back in the pot with the sauce, mix well and serve with a generous grating of freshly grated Parmesan cheese.


Anonymous said...

Ah.. what I wouldn't do for sun dried tomatoes! I envy you right now, when I can find them here in Japan they are SOOOOO expensive. I'll have to figure out a way. The pasta... Spot on.... DELISH

görel said...

So there is lot of calcium in cannellini beans? I didn't know! I must talk my vegan daughter into eating more of these then. And eat them myself too. This looks delicious.

Murasaki Shikibu said...

Girl Japan: You can make your own. There's a cook book out there by Minami Hideyama 'Dento no Sozai wo ikasu Shinyasai Ryori...Kumamoto' (p.62) where she explains how you can make sun dried tomatoes in your home in Japan. Since they're home made they are totally preservative free and they look redder and prettier. ;)

Görel: Not a whole lot. Maybe 19 mg in half a cup, but if you're trying to up your calcium intake you have to make sure everything you eat contains even smaller doses of calcium so that it all adds up to 1000 mg + at the end of the day! If you're vegetarian I think eating legumes is particularly important though, to ensure you don't have malnutrition problems. My friend's mom was a traditional vegetarian (Hindu) and almost everything she ate had chickpeas or lentils in it.

Natashya said...

I love pasta, great idea to put cannellini in it! My daughter is hypochondriac too, she is 19. Amazing the worries that she comes up with.

Justin Schwartz said...

yum, this is the kind of food I could eat every day for dinner