Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Lemon and Parsley Pasta with Walnuts

Sicilian Penne Pasta with Lemon Zest, Walnuts and Parsley

Serves 4

Economical, fun to eat and healthful, this full flavoured dish cost about $2.00 a portion to prepare.
Everyone loves pasta! However, diabetics, health-nuts like me, and those wishing to lose weight needlessly avoid their beloved, pasta due to its high glycemic index.
Friendly health authorities emphasize AP White flour is not so good for our diabetic friends and their pancreas. On the grocers shelves there are a plethora of tasty, satisfying alternatives such as whole wheat, brown rice or quinoa pasta. Some pasta is made from fibrous beans, too.
Four ounces of parsley contains more vitamin C than any other standard culinary vegetable; three times as much as oranges and about the same as blackcurrants. The iron content is exceptional and the plant is a good source of manganese and bone-building calcium. It is also exceptionally high in potassium. The nuts and flax add an omega-3 essential fatty acid boost we need to prevent heart disease and to clear out congested, plaque-filled arteries. If salt is an issue, please reduce the suggested portion.

1 pound whole wheat, penne pasta (try quinoa pasta)
½ cup EVOO (extra virgin olive oil) Antioxidant
1 organic lemon, (vitamin C)
1 tbs. ground flax seed (Omega 3)
1 cup walnut pieces (Omega 3)
1/2 cup Parmesan, freshly grated
1 bu. parsley, washed and finely chopped
Freshly ground pepper
Sea Salt

· Zest the lemon with a zester or vegetable peeler, add it to the EVOO; let it stand / marinate for 20 minutes while you boil the pasta and prepare a nutritious salad.
· Cover with cling film to retain the aromas of the oil.
· Bring a large stockpot of water to boil. Add the salt and cook the pasta according to package instructions. Reserve a little of the starchy pasta water.
· In the meantime, mix the Parmesan with the oil, freshly ground pepper, half the parsley and three spoonfuls of cooking water.
· Drain the al dente pasta well, pour onto serving bowl and mix thoroughly with the oil and lemon zest until well combined.
· Add a spoonful of pasta water if necessary to dilute sauce further to a creamy consistency.
· Garnish with chopped walnuts, a wedge of lemon, and more parsley.
· Sprinkle with remaining parsley, lemon zest and serve immediately with more Parma on the side.
· Serve this dish with a salad of dark leafy greens like spinach, romaine, or arugula.
Do your best to not over-cook the pasta. It should have a little firmness to it

Nutrition Facts
6 Servings
Amount Per Serving
Total Fat
18.3 g

Saturated Fat
2.6 g

Polyunsaturated Fat
10.0 g

Monounsaturated Fat
4.0 g
3.6 mg
1,257.9 mg
213.5 mg
Total Carbohydrate
41.7 g

Dietary Fiber
8.8 g

0.7 g
13.2 g

Vitamin A
17.7 %
Vitamin B-12
1.2 %
Vitamin B-6
11.8 %
Vitamin C
26.9 %
Vitamin D
0.0 %
Vitamin E
5.6 %
12.0 %
28.5 %
10.6 %
15.4 %
20.4 %
131.7 %
7.7 %
Pantothenic Acid
7.7 %
23.7 %
7.2 %
54.9 %
15.4 %
13.5 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.