Even for a nutritionist, it’s hard to convince myself that every healthy food tastes good as well. In recommending my clients to switch to whole grain foods, I have no problem with brand names for whole grain bread or cereal but pasta, here is where I get a little cringy. I’ve never really found an acceptable tasting whole wheat pasta, and that’s the problem too–I want the pasta to be more than just acceptable. Most whole wheat pastas aren’t even on the acceptability scale. The heavy, dry and yes cardboard texture makes eating most whole wheat pastas like taking medicine; it’s good for you, but you just try to get through it. Until now.
Shopping this week at my very favorite store for Fabulous Food Finds, La Cuisine Cookware shop in Old Town Alexandria, owner Nancy Pollard was literally kvelling over The Scrumptious Pantry pastas that put an end to the inedible whole grain pastas we’ve come to know (and hate). The wheat for this pasta is grown on a small farm called Il Cerreto in Pomerance Tuscany. The pasta is extruded through a bronze die and dried at low temperatures helping it with its extraordinary taste and texture.
So no more looks of frustration and reluctance to recommend a whole grain pasta for my clients. After all, man cannot exist on bread alone.
FARFALLE WITH BROCCOLI RABE AND GARLIC OIL
1 ½ pound broccoli rabe, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup plus 1 Tbsp olive oil
5 garlic cloves, minced
1/8-1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1 pound The Scrumptious Pantry Farfelle
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Grated fresh Parmesan shards as garnish
1. Heat 1 Tbsp of the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the chopped broccoli rabe and saute for 3 minutes. Cover and cook until lightly wilted. Uncover and add to a bowl.
2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Meanwhile, add the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil and garlic to the skillet and reduce the heat to low. Simmer the garlic in the oil until fragrant, about 5-7 minutes. Do not let the garlic brown. Add the red pepper flakes and broccoli rabe to the garlic oil, toss well.
3. Add the farfelle to the boiling water and cook until al dente about 8-10 minutes. Drain. Toss the pasta and broccoli rabe together and top with Parmesan shards.