How to Make Healthy Pasta Primavera

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Healthy Pasta Primavera was for dinner last night and it was delicious.  This dish fits into a healthy balanced lifestyle and you will feel good about eating it.  Pasta Primavera is a fresh vegetable dish made up of all of your favorites straight from your garden, farmers market or grocery store. Last night I was trying to use every vegetable that I had on hand which included 4 carrots, 3 stalks of celery, 1 medium onion, 1 yellow pepper, 1 large zucchini and 3 cloves of garlic. Carrots, celery, onions and garlic are a must in almost everything that I cook for flavor and health benefits, so I always have them available. Including vegetables that are in season makes this dish extra special and that’s why I included the zucchini and yellow pepper.

Start with a large skillet at medium heat with 3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. Once warm, add your chopped carrots and celery, a little salt and pepper to taste and let cook down. Meanwhile, chop your onions, peppers and zucchini into small squares and start-up a large stockpot at high heat on the stove top in preparation to boil the pasta. Fill 3/4 of the pot with water and 1/4 of fat-free low sodium chicken broth. I have found that cooking pasta in chicken broth adds tremendous flavor, College Inn Brand is my favorite.

After the carrots and celery have cooked through, add your zucchini and allow to lightly brown and then put all of these vegetables into your serving dish. Next, lower the heat to medium-low, add 2 more tablespoons of olive oil and your onions to the pan, season them with a little more salt and pepper and turn down the heat to allow them to sweeten. After the onions are lightly browned and cooked through, add your peppers to the pan and allow them to cook 1/2 way, then add the finely chopped garlic. Garlic cooks quickly and should always be added last. Next, add 1/2 cup of white wine (one that you would drink) and 1/2 cup of fat-free low sodium chicken broth to the pan and let cook down. This should take about 10 minutes, so at this point you can add a pound of your favorite whole grain pasta to the boiling water. My favorite is rotini, the Omega 3 Fiber Barilla Brand is fantastic and is what I use for this recipe.

After the wine and chicken broth have cooked down, add your other vegetables back into the skillet and let the flavors come together. Once your pasta is cooked al dente, add it into the skillet and stir with your vegetable mixture. After the pasta soaks up a good portion of the liquid, add the pasta Primavera into your serving dish, top with fresh chopped flat leaf parsley and sprinkle with romano cheese. You will make this dish over and over again and can serve it cold at a picnic and even add chicken or shrimp. Enjoy!

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