Thursday, March 13, 2008

Pasta Salad with a Crunch (or Broccoli Pasta Salad)

I could have set today's title as "hubby likes it"!! I've been trying to get my husband to eat broccoli for 20 years. This recipe marks the first time I've succeeded. I watched in disbelief as the guy headed back for thirds, yes thirds. It was only then I believed that he was eating broccoli, and liking it. The secret? Hide the florets.
Here's the recipe that finally made broccoli a hit for everyone in our family:
The pasta:
1/3 lb. whole wheat spaghetti

The crunch:
1 package (12 oz) broccoli slaw
1/4 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/2 cup snow peas, ends removed
1/4 cup chopped green onions

The dressing:
1/3 cup seasoned rice vinegar
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon minced garlic

The toppings:
2 tablespoons cilantro
2 tablespoons chopped peanuts

Break pasta into smallish pieces, 3 to 4 inches in length. Cook until al dente, about 8 minutes or so. Drain and pour into a large bowl. Add all the crunchy ingredients to the pasta in the large bowl. Mix the dressing ingredients together, and pour over the crunchy pasta. Toss everything together. This pasta may be served immediately, when it's warm. Or, it may be chilled and served later. Either way, add the toppings after the last toss. It tastes amazing!

Stealthy Cooking Tip

Use whole wheat pasta in new recipes! Your family may be used to only white pasta under their spaghetti sauce or with their mac and cheese. But, you can introduce whole grain pasta in new dishes, like this one, and they won't notice the difference! Whole grain pastas can add up to 6 grams of fiber per serving (depending on type and brand name). Soluble fiber traps cholesterol in the stomach and helps the body excrete it. Insoluble fiber helps move things along "regularly" through the digestive system. A diet rich in fiber helps keep you healthy.

No comments: