Being a vegetarian, the big question I have when evaluating the nutrition in a dish has always been how much protein does the dish have..And, adding the protein component without adding a lot of fats in the way, has been the next challenge. Pasta has always been one of our favorite weeknight dinners….its easy, its flexible and fast. But at times, it can also become boring. I have tried my best to re-invent pasta and come up with new flavors and sauces. This is my latest discovery and an absolute favorite too. It hit the spot on taste and nutrition and is going to feature in the kitchen more often.
Yes, I sauced the pasta by making a quick and easy hummus, accentuated it with a little bit of cheese and milk and voila protein rich sauce, sans the meat. Add some veggies into the mix and you have a perfectly balanced and healthy meal.
1 lb pasta
2 red bell peppers
8 oz pre-sliced mushroom
2 medium onions, sliced
1 head of roasted garlic
1 can garbanzo beans
1/2 tsp cumin powder
1 tbsp tahini paste
1/4 cup garlic flavored olive oil
1/2 cup milk
2 Laughing cow cheese wedges(optional)
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 tbsp butter
2 tsp italian seasoning
1 tbsp red pepper flakes
salt and pepper to taste
chopped parsley/cilantro to garnish
Preheat the broiler on high and place the two red peppers directly under the heat. Keep a watchful eye and turn around to ensure uniform charring. Yes, this is one recipe where you are supposed to burn the produce. 🙂 Once you get a uniform char, place in a dish and cover with aluminium foil. Let rest for 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, cook the pasta in plenty of salted water until al dente. Heat the tbsp of butter and a tbsp of olive oil in a pan. Add the sliced onion and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally until caramelized and golden brown. When the peppers are cool enough to handle, peel the outer skin and remove the seeds.
Place the roasted red bell pepper, drained garbanzo beans, roasted garlic, remaining olive oil, italian seasoning, red pepper flakes, tahini, cumin powder, Laughing Cow Cheese Wedges, parmesan cheese and pulse until it all comes together as a puree. Add enough milk through the feed tube to make a sauce of pourable consistency. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper as necessary.
To the caramelized onions add the sliced mushrooms and cook until the mushrooms are cooked and tender. Add the sauce and pasta and toss to combine. Top with the chopped parsley or cilantro and additional parmesan if desired.
Verdict: Layers of flavor in this pasta dish from the caramelized onions to mushrooms to the creamy and cheesy hummus sauce. This is one of my favorite pasta dishes that I put together.
Sending this to:
1. Presto Pasta Nights hosted by Chez Cayyenne this week.
2. Vegetarian Foodie Fridays and
3. MLLA #28 originally started by Susan of The Well Seasoned Cook and hosted by Divya this week.