Gluten Free Penne with Caponata Sauce

Gluten Free Penne with Caponata Sauce

You have no doubt heard of people who eat a gluten free diet. A gluten free diet excludes gluten, a protein found in wheat and related grains, like barley and rye. Gluten causes health problems in those who suffer with Celiac disease (CD) and in some cases those who may have allergies to wheat.

Some have argued we need carbohydrates and wheat needs to be eaten. Also others have voiced that eating Gluten free is just a fade diet. Are these statements true? We would say no.

Making the choice to take gluten out of your diet is for health reasons, and it has nothing to do with losing weight, as most fade diets proclaim. Secondly, you can obtain the same amount of carbohydrates as you would in wheat products as you can in eating fruits and vegetables.

De Boles Gluten Free  pasta for - Penne with Caponata SauceThe fact is most substitutions used for wheat do have some carbohydrates in them. Such as the product we chose to prepare are featured recipe.

This product De Boles is not exclusive to just using white or brown rice flour or corn flour, no but rather it uses brown rice flour with whole grain quinoa flour and ground flax seed flour, as well as the rice bran.

This gluten free product has 4 servings with 41 grams of carbohydrates per serving. As there is whole grains, and bran, it will not raise blood sugar levels.

Now for our featured all organic recipe: Gluten Free Penne with Caponata Sauce and here is what you will need.

1 red onion

1 red sweet pepper

1 yellow sweet pepper

3 small purple carrots

2 zucchini

1 medium egg plant

2 cloves garlic, minced

14 ounce can roasted tomatoes

1 teaspoon dried oregano

3 – 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Preapred vegtables for - Gluten Free Penne with Caponata Sauce

Cut all the vegetables into chunky dices, but mince the garlic.

Sauting carrots, onions and garlic in olve oil

In a large skillet, saute oil, onions, garlic and carrots for 3 minutes. Next add the eggplant and peppers, and cook 3 minutes more, stirring frequently.

Now add the zucchini and cook 3 minutes more, and again stir frequently.

Adding roasted tomatoes to suateed vegetablesAdd roasted tomatoes….

adding oregano

Add the oregano and stir in, till well incorporated. Let simmer for 10 minutes.

Cooked pasta for - Gluten Free Penne with Caponata Sauce

Mean while, cook the gluten free pasta according to package instructions. Drain do not rinse. By this time the vegetables should have completed the 10 minutes of simmering.

Gluten Free Penne with Caponata Sauce

In a large serving bowl mix vegetables and pasta together. Plate and serve with a favorite meat, such as fresh ground turkey basil and feta sausages, from the Whole Foods Market. Enjoy!!

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Herb and Chicken Penne with Creamy Italian Cheese

Herb Chicken Penne with Creamy Italian Cheese

Delectable Italian deliciousness in a snap!! This meal is easy to make, in about 30 to 40 minutes.

Before we get started let’s see what the nutritional benefits of this pasta dish is.

Whole wheat Penne pasta is called for in this recipe. The whole wheat or brown pasta retains the fiber of the wheat flour. Therefore making the pasta a complex carbohydrate, not a simple carbohydrate like the traditional pastas with the fiber removed before being ground to flour. Complex carbohydrates digest slower, leaving you to feel full longer, giving more energy and controlling your blood sugar levels. This is great for diabetics.

A serving of Chicken (3 oz) provides 65% of your daily need of protein. The recipe also uses flaked sun-dried tomatoes, but before they are processed, one cup of sun-dried tomatoes provides 7.6 grams of protein, 1.6 grams of fat, and 6.6 grams of dietary fiber, which is equal to 27% of your daily need for fiber.

Sun-dried tomatoes serve as an excellent source of minerals, including potassium and magnesium. They also are filled with vitamins K and niacin a B vitamin. Vitamin K helps with blood clotting and wound healing and niacin is good for brain function (source for sun-dried tomatoes: Livestrong).

cooked and rinsed whole wheat penne pastaHere are the step by step instructions with complete recipe to follow.

Cook 2 cups of whole wheat Penne pasta according to directions on package. Drain well, set aside.  Mix spices, including corn starch or arrowroot in a small bowl, set aside.

 

 

 

Here are the spices needed:

1 tablespoon sun-dried tomatoes flaked or powder

1 teaspoon coarse sea salt

1 teaspoon marjoram

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 ½ teaspoon sugar

1 tablespoons dried onion

1 teaspoon corn starch or arrowroot powder

½ teaspoon black pepper

¼ teaspoon garlic powder

 

If you have allergies to corn than you can use arrowroot starch. You will find this starch in your local Whole Foods Market or other local health food store.

Also, you may not find flaked or powdered sun-dried tomatoes. Just buy whole dried sun-dried tomatoes and place one or two small dried tomatoes in a food processor and process to flakes or powder. It is your preference.

melting unsalted butter, adding chicken to cook until no more pink

Melt 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter in large skillet on medium-high heat. Add chopped chicken, cook and stir 5 minutes or until lightly browned, or no pink is present and the meat is oblique in color.

mixing cooked chicken with spices, tomato, cream and cheese

 

Next add spices, 1 14.5 oz. can of petite tomatoes undrained, 1 cup of cream cream and 1/2 cup of fresh grated Parmesan- Rigatino cheese.

Mix in; bring to a boil, stirring constantly until well blended and starts to thicken some. Reduce heat to low; simmer 5 minutes.

 

Mixing in pasta, stirring to coat and cover pan to let stand for 5 minutes with heat off

Stir in pasta and toss gently to coat; cover and let stand with heat off for 5 minutes.

close-up of Herbed Chicken Penne with Creamy Italian Cheese

Plate and serve with additional Parmesan cheese, if desired.

 

Herb and Chicken Penne with Creamy Italian Cheese

2 cups whole wheat pasta Penne

2 tablespoons butter, unsalted

1 pound chicken breasts cut into 1 inch chunks

1 tablespoon sun-dried tomatoes flaked or powder

1 teaspoon coarse sea salt

1 teaspoon marjoram

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 ½ teaspoon sugar

1 tablespoons dried onion

1 teaspoon corn starch or arrowroot powder

½ teaspoon black pepper

¼ teaspoon garlic powder

1 14 ½ oz. can petite diced tomatoes, undrained

1 cup cream or half and half

½ cup grated fresh Parmesan-Rigatino cheese

Cook pasta according to directions on package. Drain well, set aside.

 

Mix spices, including corn starch in a small bowl, set aside.

Melt butter in large skillet on medium-high heat. Add chopped chicken; cook and stir 5 minutes or until lightly browned, seeing no pink in the meat.

Next add spices, tomatoes, cream and cheese. Mix in; bring to boil, stirring constantly until well blended and starts to thicken some. Reduce heat to low; simmer 5 minutes.

Stir in pasta and toss gently to coat; cover and let stand with heat off for 5 minutes.

Plate and serve with additional Parmesan cheese, if desired.

 

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Apple Chicken Sausage with Whole Wheat Penne Pasta

Apple Chicken Sausage with Whole Wheat Penne Pasta

There has been a lot of new information on processed foods, seed oils high in omega-6, refined sugar, as being the cause of bodily inflammation. We have also read about lowering our carbohydrate intake, as too much carb’s over works the pancreas and heightens insulin levels. Refined grains is the big culprit to weight gain. Refined grains digest fast and causing rapid use of glucose or a spike of sugar levels in the blood stream, causing the body to store the excess sugar not used, as fat.

But what about whole wheat pasta? Or better yet 100% whole wheat pasta? When consumed, can it be to blame for weight gain as well? No!!

When the fiber is not taken away from the grain, but processed together, is actually better for the body. Fiber causes food to digest slower and at the same time move faster through the digestive tract.  As  the whole grain pasta is digested, it releases a stead flow of glucose (not all at once as does white pasta without the fiber) giving sustained energy. The fiber then pushes the digested food out, not being stored as fat.

A 1-cup serving of cooked whole-grain pasta contains 3.9 total grams of fiber, while the same amount of white pasta contains 2.3 grams.

It is also worthy of noting, that whole grains lower blood pressure, were as grains with the fiber removed can cause blood pressure to raise.

Now for our featured recipe: Apple Chicken Sausage with Whole Wheat Penne Pasta. Here is what you will need:

12 0z. 100% whole wheat Penne pasta, cooked

1 package Al Fresco Sweet Apple Chicken Sausage

1 1/2 cups Alfredo sauce

3/4 cup bell pepper strips, mixed colors

1/2 cup french stringed beans

For the vegetables, I just buy them fresh frozen from the Whole Foods Market. You can use a jar of Alfredo Sauce, but I make my own.

1/4 cup butter

1 cup Heavy cream

1/2 to 3/4 cup Asiago cheese, grated fresh

Heat a small sauce pan, medium-high. Add butter and melt, not allowing to scorch, next add cream and stir while pouring. After the two are well incorporated, add grated cheese and mix in as it melts. Bring to a small rapid bowl, remove from heat and set aside.

Al Fresco Sweet Apple Chicken SausageSome Al Fresco brand sausages you can buy already cooked and at some markets they package it fresh, uncooked. Al Fresco is my preferred brand, as it is minimally processed and no preservatives added.  Click on image to go to their web-site to receive a $1.00 coupon off. I have been buying the package at about $3.50 to 3.99.

I prefer to buy the fresh uncooked sausage.

In a large skillet, cook sausage over medium-high heat. Let sausage crumble to small bits. Add Alfredo sauce, cooked pasta and vegetables. Stir until all are mixed well together.

Plate and serve.

Apple Chicken Sausage with Whole Wheat Penne Pasta  with Italian Rustic Bread and melted Provolone

We had an Italian Rustic Bread loaf and melted provolone cheese on slices of the bread. Wow what a great addition to the plated pasta.

 

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Chicken and Goat Cheese Spinach Pasta

Chicken and Goat Cheese Spinach Pasta

All products made from wheat flour will have the same glycemic index, whole grains include the bran component, which contains additional dietary fiber and B-vitamins. Also there is 7 to 12 grams of protein in whole wheat pasta. Protein is a needed daily to live well, making whole wheat pasta a better choice.

Our featured recipes has goat cheese that is about 7.21 g of fat, but it also has 5.88 g of protein. Remember, protein is needed to keep the body active and to make a repair muscle tissue. If you are active you will burn the fat. Also the monocular structure of the fat in goat’s milk is smaller than in cow’s milk, making goat cheese easer to digest. If you are lactose intolerant, goat milk is the way to go.

The recipe also calls for poultry, which is full of iron, zinc and vitamin B12.

So here is what you will need:

ingredients for Chicken and Goat Cheese Spinach Pasta

Also you will need 6 tablespoons of olive oil, divided. Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Cook the Penne pasta according to the packaged instructions. Over medium high heat in a large frying pan, heat 3 tbsp. olive oil.  Add garlic and sauté until lightly browned.  Remove from heat.  Stir in flour and salt.  Slowly whisk in milk, chicken broth; whisk constantly so no lumps form.  Return to heat, whisk in parmesan cheese, basil, oregano and black pepper. Set aside.

whisking milk ,chicken broth, cheeses and spices for Chicken and Goat Cheese Spinach Pasta

In a large skillet over medium high heat, add olive oil. Once heated add diced onions and sauté; then add chicken breast chunks, cook until pink is gone.

frying chicken and onions for Chicken and Goat Cheese Spinach Pasta

Next add spinach but do not stir in. Cover pan with lid. Turn heat to low and cook until spinach is wilted. Mix in spinach.

Grease a 9 x 13-inch baking dish.  Spread a third of the cheese mixture in the bottom of the dish.  Top with a third of the pasta, then a third of the chicken/spinach mixture, Repeat twice.

preparing Chicken and Goat Cheese Spinach Pasta first layer

Once you have prepared the pasta dish to bake, sprinkle additional parmesan cheese on top if you wish too.

Chicken and Goat Cheese Spinach Pasta prepared to cook

Place into oven and bake uncovered for 35 minutes. When done let stand 5 to 10 minutes. Plate and serve.

Chicken and Goat Cheese Spinach Pasta

Chicken and Goat Cheese Spinach Pasta

8 oz. penne pasta, whole wheat

6 tbsp. olive oil, divided

2 cloves garlic, minced

5 tbsp. flour

½ tsp. salt

1 ½ cups milk

1 ½ cups chicken broth

¾ cup Parmesan, grated

½ tsp. basil, dried

¼ tsp. oregano, dried

¼ tsp. black pepper

1 medium onion, diced

3 chicken breasts, large; cut into 1-inch chunks

12 oz. baby spinach, fresh

1 ½ cups mozzarella, shredded

12 oz. goat cheese

Heat oven to 350 degrees

Cook pasta according to package instructions.

Over medium high heat in a large frying pan, heat 3 tbsp. olive oil.  Add garlic and sauté until lightly browned.  Remove from heat.  Stir in flour and salt.  Slowly whisk in milk, chicken broth; whisk constantly so no lumps form.  Return to heat, whisk in parmesan cheese, basil, oregano and black pepper. Set aside.

In a large skillet over medium high heat, add olive oil. Once heated add onion and sauté; then add chicken breast chunks, cook until pink is gone. Next add spinach but do not stir in. Cover pan with lid. Turn heat to low and cook until spinach is wilted. Mix in spinach.

Grease a 9 x 13-inch baking dish.  Spread a third of the cheese mixture in the bottom of the dish.  Top with a third of the pasta, then a third of the chicken/spinach mixture, Repeat twice.  Sprinkle additional parmesan cheese on top if desired.

Bake uncovered for about 35 minutes.  Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

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