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    Quick & Easy Pasta Primavera

    Loaded with all kinds of vegetables, this quick and easy Pasta Primavera makes for a truly excellent vegetarian meal, but would also be perfect served as a side dish, or could even be eaten as a cold pasta salad!

    I don’t believe that one can ever go wrong in serving pasta… I mean, who doesn’t like pasta, right? Personally, I think I’ve yet to meet a pasta dish that I didn’t like!
    And this particular recipe right here? It’s a total winner; one that you’re gonna want to know by heart, one that you will want to add to your regular rotation, no doubt in my mind. 
    Not only is it super quick and easy to make, it’s also incredibly versatile. Indeed, if you didn’t have the particular veggies that I used on hand that day — or in your wanted to change things up a bit — you could make all kinds of substitutions, or even additions! 
    Likewise, if you wanted to turn this dish into a complete meal, you could very easily throw in some protein by adding a few pieces of roasted chicken, some sliced sausage, a few shrimps, some leftover roast beef, or whatever cooked meat you happen to have on hand.
    Also too, this pasta dish happens to be equally good whether you decide to eat it piping hot, at room temperature or straight out of the ice box. Can you say convenient?
    I get the feeling you’ll love this one as much as I did! 

    To start, cook the pasta — I used rotini, but any short pasta will do —  in a large pot filled with salted water, following the directions on the package.
    While that’s, happening, heat a little bit of olive oil (or any other cooking oil of your choice) in a large saute pan set over medium heat. Add the onions, garlic, carrot, celery and salt and and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the vegetables are slightly softened and fragrant, but not browned.

    Add the broccoli florets and chunks of asparagus, and continue cooking for about a minute, or until those 2 latest additions turn a beautiful vibrant shade of green.
    Kill the heat, or even better yet, remove the pan from the heat source.

    As soon as your pasta is cooked, drain it and add it straight to the pan.

    Now add the frozen peas — no need to even thaw them, really — lime juice, extra-virgin olive oil, herbes de Provence and ground black pepper.
    If you’re not a fan of herbes de Provence, or can’t get your hands on them, feel free to substitute Italian herbs, or even just a little bit of dried basil, thyme and oregano.

    Give this whole thing a good stir, until everything is well combined…

    Serve without delay, garnished with a few shavings of fresh Parmesan cheese and a sprinkle of chopped basil leaves.
    Although like I said before, this pasta dish is also excellent served warm, or even cold… so no rush really; you can take your time!

    Pasta Primavera

    Loaded with all kinds of vegetables, this quick and easy Pasta Primavera makes for a truly excellent vegetarian meal, but would also be perfect served as a side dish, or could even be eaten as a cold pasta salad!
    Servings: 4

    US Customary – Metric

    Optional garnish
    Fresh Parmesan cheese shavings
    Chopped fresh basil leaves

    Cook the pasta in a large pot filled with salted water, according to the directions on the package.

    Meanwhile, heat a little bit of olive oil (or other cooking oil of your choice) in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add the onions, garlic, carrot, celery and salt and and cook for 3-4 minutes, or until the vegetables are slightly softened and fragrant, but not browned. Add the broccoli florets and asparagus, continue cooking for about a minute, or until they turn vibrant green.

    Remove from heat, drain the pasta and add it to the pan, along with the frozen peas, lime juice, evoo, herbes de Provence and ground black pepper.

    Stir to combine and serve without delay, garnished with a few shavings of fresh Parmesan cheese and a sprinkle of chopped basil leaves.

    This pasta dish is also excellent served warm, or even cold.

    Calories: 388kcal, Carbohydrates: 53g, Protein: 10g, Fat: 15g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Sodium: 614mg, Potassium: 422mg, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 5g, Vitamin A: 3155IU, Vitamin C: 33.6mg, Calcium: 72mg, Iron: 3.3mg

    If you’ve tried this recipe, please take a minute to rate the recipe and let me know how things went for you in the comments below. It’s always such a pleasure to hear from you!
    You can also FOLLOW ME on PINTEREST, FACEBOOK, INSTAGRAM and TWITTER for more delicious, healthy recipes! LEGGI TUTTO

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    Mediterranean Couscous Salad

    Filled with all kinds of good-for-you ingredients, this Mediterranean Couscous Salad is as quick and easy to make as it is nutritious and delicious to eat!

    You can never have too many salad recipes now, can you? This fab Mediterranean Couscous Salad is one recipe that you’ll probably want to know by heart! The good news is, it’s so easy to make, you’ll probably only need to whip it up once and then you’ll be able to replicate it at will!
    Filled with loads of chickpeas, chunks of juicy tomatoes, crunchy yellow bell peppers and creamy little pearls of bocconcini, and very unpretentiously seasoned with tons of fresh basil, lemon juice, salt and pepper, this salad is super light and refreshing, yet incredibly satisfying.
    Absolutely perfect in the summertime, piled right next to your favorite grilled meat, it can just as well and very easily be enjoyed any time of year, and at any time of day, too! Hey, try it for breakfast, alongside a couple of pan fried eggs, why don’t you?
    Or, just enjoy it on its own, as a light vegetarian lunch or dinner… 

    A lot of people think that cooking couscous is ultra complicated and practically requires a degree in rocket-science or something. Nothing could be further from the truth! If you can boil water, you can make couscous. 
    Basically all you need to do is bring your liquid to the boil — in this case chicken broth — then as soon as it boils, dump the couscous in all at once. A ratio of 1:1 works perfectly fine, but you could go up to as much as 1.25 liquid to 1 couscous. So see? Even the measuring part isn’t totally exact science!

    Once your couscous has been added, give it a quick stir, then kill the heat, put a cover on that pan and let it rest undisturbed for 5 to 10 minutes, until all the broth has been absorbed.

    While your couscous is happening, you’ll have plenty of time to prep and measure the rest of the ingredients…

    As soon as it’s ready, fluff the couscous with a fork to separate the grains and transfer it to a large mixing bowl.

    Add the rest of the ingredients to that bowl and toss gently, until well combined.

    Technically, your salad is now ready to be served, but if time permits, I strongly suggest that you put it in the fridge for a few hours to allow all those beautiful flavors to meld. Honestly, you could even afford to make the salad up to a full day ahead of time, if you wanted to.
    Any leftovers will keep for up to several days, providing that they’re kept refrigerated and in an airtight container.

    Mediterranean Couscous Salad

    Filled with all kinds of good-for-you ingredients, this Mediterranean Couscous Salad is as quick and easy to make as it is nutritious and delicious to eat!
    Servings: 4

    US Customary – Metric

    In a small saucepan, bring the chicken broth to the boil; add the couscous all at once, stir quickly and kill the heat. Cover and let rest undisturbed for 5 to 10 minutes, until all the broth has been absorbed.

    Meanwhile, prep and measure the rest of the ingredients.

    Fluff the couscous with a fork to separate the grains and transfer it to a large mixing bowl. Add the rest of the ingredients and toss gently, until well combined.

    Serve immediately or place in the fridge for a few hours to allow flavors to meld.

    This salad will keep for up to several days providing that it’s kept refrigerated in an airtight container.

    Calories: 553kcal, Carbohydrates: 83g, Protein: 18g, Fat: 16g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Sodium: 634mg, Potassium: 553mg, Fiber: 11g, Sugar: 5g, Vitamin A: 85IU, Vitamin C: 68.1mg, Calcium: 74mg, Iron: 4mg

    If you’ve tried this recipe, please take a minute to rate the recipe and let me know how things went for you in the comments below. It’s always such a pleasure to hear from you!
    You can also FOLLOW ME on PINTEREST, FACEBOOK, INSTAGRAM and TWITTER for more delicious, healthy recipes! LEGGI TUTTO

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    Zucchini Ribbon Skewers

    hese Zucchini Ribbon Skewers are so elegant and pretty to look at, even non zucchini lovers are going to be all over them!

    Seriously… how cute and sophisticated are those little zucchini skewers? Don’t you wanna just reach through your screen and grab one or two?
    These little guys, they’re just the perfect accompaniment to any grilled meat, or fish, or chicken. I think they would even be the perfect sideshow for your next corn party! In fact, they’re so darn cute and tasty, they might very well end up stealing the show! 
    I’ll give it to you, they are a tad tricky and delicate to put together — I mean, it would be so much easier to just slice your zukes super thick and throw them on the grill — but I think their good looks alone make them worth the extra effort. That and the fact that, when sliced this thinly, zucchini becomes so super tender and almost creamy…
    I think these guys are a guaranteed winner this grilling season! So why not go ahead and make a batch… or four? Cuz yeah… they’re gonna disappear fast, so you might want to at least double, if not triple that recipe…

    Before you do anything, preheat your outdoor grill to high.
    Then, slice the zucchinis lengthwise into very thin slices  — about 1/8-inch. In order to get this done, the use of a mandoline is very strongly recommended. In fact, I’d even go as far as to say that it’s almost mandatory, unless you have out-of-this-world knife skills!
    As you can see, I chose to leave the stalks on my zucchinis… they are perfectly edible, look super pretty, and will go completely unnoticed texture-wise when sliced this thin! 

    Now place the zucchini slices on a large baking sheet and drizzle with a little bit of olive oil, then sprinkle them generously with salt and pepper. Let the slices sit for about 5 minutes; this will make them more pliable.
    Don’t skip this step! If you were to try and skewer those zucchini slices without doing this first, they would only crack and break on you. They need to become super soft and pliable in order to bend into lovely, curvy ribbons. 

    Once the zucchini slices are nice and pliable, delicately thread them onto wooden skewers — 3 slices per skewer — alternating between colors if using yellow and green zucchinis.
    The contrast in colors makes the skewers that much prettier, me finds! But all green or all yellow would also work perfectly fine. Just be sure to select zucchinis of similar shapes and sizes, so your skewers look more even. Also, straighter zukes will be much easier to work with then curvy ones… 

    Technically, you could very well serve your Zucchini Skewers right away… grilling them is not absolutely mandatory, as zucchinis can just as well be eaten raw. But grilling them will definitely take them to the next level! Ultimately, though, the decision is yours…
    So what’s it gonna be: raw or grilled?

    If you’re gonna go all out and grill your skewers, place them on the hot grill and grill for 1 or 2 minutes, just long enough to soften the zukes and get nice grill marks on them, then very delicately flip the skewers with a pair of tongs and continue grilling for about a minute or so.

    All that’s left to do now is remove your finished skewers to a plate and garnish them with a little bit of chopped parsley and a few shavings of Parmesan cheese — if you are so inclined, of course — and then serve with your favorite grilled meat or fish… or whatever else you happen to be eating that day!

    Zucchini Ribbon Skewers

    These Zucchini Ribbon Skewers are so elegant and pretty to look at, even non zucchini lovers are going to be all over them!
    Servings: 8 skewers

    2 medium-large zucchinis, preferrably one yellow, one green
    3-4 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
    Generous sprinkle of salt and pepper

    Optional garnish
    Chopped parsley
    Parmesan cheese shavings

    Preheat your outdoor grill to high.

    Slice the zucchinis lengthwise into very thin slices (about 1/8″); the use of a mandoline is very strongly recommended.

    Place the slices on a large baking sheet and drizzle with a little bit of olive oil, then sprinkle them generously with salt and pepper. Let the slices sit for about 5 minutes; this will make them more pliable.

    Delicately thread the slices onto wooden skewers – 3 slices per skewer – alternating between colors if using yellow and green zucchinis.

    Place the skewers on the hot grill and grill for 1-2 minutes, just enough to soften the zukes and get nice grill marks on them, then very delicately flip the skewers with a pair of tongs and continue grilling for another minute or so.

    Remove to a plate and garnish with chopped parsley and Parmesan cheese, if desired, before serving.

    Serving: 1skewer, Calories: 54kcal, Carbohydrates: 1g, Fat: 5g, Sodium: 4mg, Potassium: 127mg, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 100IU, Vitamin C: 8.7mg, Calcium: 8mg, Iron: 0.2mg

    If you’ve tried this recipe, please take a minute to rate the recipe and let me know how things went for you in the comments below. It’s always such a pleasure to hear from you!
    You can also FOLLOW ME on PINTEREST, FACEBOOK, INSTAGRAM and TWITTER for more delicious, healthy recipes! LEGGI TUTTO