Tag Archives: Pasta

Pasta Primavera

 Is every0ne else as excited for Spring as I am??  Today marks the first day of Spring, and winter is officially O.V.E.R!  Pretty soon, we’ll be on to sun tans and flip flops 😎

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Hello, gorgeous! 

Nothing says spring to me more than 70 degree days and big pile of veggies.  And pollen.    DSC_1026 (1024x681)

The weather here has been fantastic for the past week or so, and we’re looking to continue to trend through to the weekend.  75 degrees and sunny?  I’ll take it!

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 In honor of the first day of Spring, today I have Pasta Primavera for you!  Tender, crunchy vegetables and a buttery parmesan sauce all tossed together with al dente penne pasta.  This meal was phenomenal!

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 Of course, Chris commented on how their was no meat involved…to him a meal isn’t a meal unless there is meat.  But he did eat two servings, veggies and all (well, minus the asparagus).  Add grilled chicken or shrimp to this dish if you have a husband like mine.

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 Pasta Primavera

makes 8 servings


  • 16 oz dry penne pasta (or the shape of your choosing)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 large red bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 3 medium carrots, thinly sliced
  • 1 medium bunch asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 1/2 cups broccoli florets
  • 1 medium tomato, seeded and chopped
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tbsp flour
  • 2 cups lowfat or skim milk
  • 6 oz shredded parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper


  1. Cook pasta according to package directions.
  2. Meanwhile, heat olive oil over medium heat in a large saute pan. Saute the onions, red pepper and carrots until soft, but not browned (about 7-8 mintues).
  3. In a medium sauce pan, melt the butter.  Saute the garlic for 1 minute.
  4. Whisk in the flour until smooth.  Let cook for 1 minute.
  5. Add the milk to the flour mixture, continuously whisking to avoid lumps.  Heat this mixture until thickened. Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Whisk in the parmesan cheese until it is melted and the sauce is smooth. 
  7. During the last 2-3 minutes of cooking time for the pasta, add the asparagus and broccoli florets.
  8. Drain the pasta and vegetables, and combine with suateed vegetables and sauce.  Mix until everything is coated with the sauce.
  9. Serve with additional grated cheese on top.

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Filed under Main Dishes, Vegetarian

Mushroom Orzo

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You should make this… today.

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For dinner or as a side dish for your dinner… or for lunch?  This is such a fast and delicous dish.  Cute rice-shaped orzo pasta with a buttery wine sauce and sauteed mushrooms.  Change what you had planned for dinner and make this instead!

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I have really grown to love mushrooms.  Not raw mushrooms… I mean they’re OK, but really I could give or take them.  Sautéed or roasted mushroom?  Get in my mouth!  They get smooth and buttery when cooked and I really enjoy their slightly chewy texture.  I know mushrooms aren’t for everyone, but I think they are really “fun gis.”  Haha!  Anybody?

Ok, moving on…

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I use my husband’s reactions to food as a guage for how much others will like them.  Now, don’t get me wrong, Chris is not a picky eater by any means.  In our 2+ years of marriage and over 7 years of being a couple and me making dinner, there have been a total of 2 meals that he refused to eat.  I think that proves that this man will eat most things.  But when he gets really excited about a meal, I know its a good one.  And this is so simple!!

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Mushroom Orzo

makes 4 servings as a side, 2 as a main dish


  • 1 cup orzo shaped pasta
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 8 oz sliced cremini mushrooms (also called baby portabello)
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 1/2 tbsp butter
  • salt and pepper


  1. Cook the orzo in salted boiling water until aldente, about 8-9 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile in a large skillet, begin sautéing the mushrooms and onion in olive oil.
  3. After about 5 minutes, season the mushrooms and onions with salt and pepper.  You want to let the mushrooms being to brown before seasoning them, as the salt will draw out the moisture and they won’t brown as much.
  4. When the mushrooms are browned and the onions are tender, add the wine to the pan.  Simmer until wine is reduced by half.
  5. Add the butter to the mushroom and wine mixture.
  6. Drain the orzo well and add to the mushroom sauce.  Stir to coat the pasta with the sauce.
  7. Enjoy!

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Filed under Side Dishes