March 26, 2012

Balsamic Pasta w/ Greens

......And just cuz I'm nice, I'll post the runner-up recipe too :)

Balsamic Pasta w/ Greens
We had a little contest on our Facebook page, asking fans what recipe they wanted to see - this one came in second place (or last place if your a pessimist).  You can find the first place recipe, Creamy Roasted Garlic Pasta, here.  I adapted this recipe from The Plant-Based Dietitian website/blog. I really like dietitian Julieanna Hever's recipes, but this one really caught my eye.

If you haven't ever made a balsamic reduction, you need to immediately.  It is ridiculously easy and so very yummy.  Balsamic vinegar is delicious, but very........well.........vinegary.  However, when you simmer balsamic vinegar gently for a few minutes on the stove, it reduces into a sweet, yummy syrup.

Typically, I make a balsamic reduction as a dressing for spinach salad - which is literally just baby spinach, red onion, with a drizzle of balsamic reduction, and a touch of salt and pepper.  So simple, yet so fancy.

The idea of using balsamic reduction as a pasta sauce was new to me - and a fabulous idea (wish I would've thought of it!).  This recipe is the epitome of whole foods, plant-based.  Brown rice pasta, balsamic vinegar, garlic, herbs, beans, greens - it doesn't get simpler than that.

Not to mention healthy with your whole grains, protein, fiber, calcium, iron, etc., etc.  No fat, no weird ingredients.  Just food.  Healthy, lovely food.

Love & Kale,
Ali

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Balsamic Pasta w/ Greens
Serves: About 4-6
Don't get freaked out if you don't think you have enough balsamic vinegar - a little goes a long way when it's reduced!  Feel free to play with the recipe - use whatever herbs you like or have on hand!  A squeeze of lemon and a little lemon zest would be fabulous!  

Print here.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb brown rice pasta (or any other whole grain pasta)
  • 1 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 can white kidney beans, drained and rinsed (I used white navy beans)
  • 1 bunch of baby spinach or kale, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Few tbsp of basil, rosemary, oregano - whatever you want!
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Instructions:
  1. Cook pasta according to package directions.  Add spinach or kale in the last minute or cooking time. Drain and rinse.
  2. Reduce balsamic vinegar - simmer on med-low heat in a saucepan for a few minutes - until it's thick and a syrup-like consistency (it should be able to coat a spoon).
  3. Combine the vinegar reduction, herbs, minced garlic, pasta and spinach or kale.  Serve and ENJOY!
Ingredients

Spinach and kale

Drain and rinse your beans

Boil pasta, then add greens and boil

Reduce your balsamic vinegar

Not quite done yet....

Perfectly reduced - a syrup consistency

Toss everything in a bowl together...

ENJOY!

2 comments:

  1. Mmmm, delicious pasta recipe! Thanks for sharing.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for commenting - let us know if you like it - it's super easy and incredibly healthy :)

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