This light recipe makes a perfect mid-week dinner when you're short on time.
6 oz whole-grain penne pasta
1 cup cooked or BPA-free canned white beans (such as navy or cannellini), drained and rinsed well
2 tomatoes, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced, divided
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tsp dried basil
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp sea salt
1 tbsp plus 1 tsp olive oil, divided
1 zucchini, cut into eighths lengthwise, then cut into 2-inch pieces
1 green bell pepper, seeded and cut into thin strips, then cut into 2-inch pieces
1/2 tsp dried rosemary
1 cup crumbled feta cheese, divided
Cook penne al dente according to package directions, adding beans during the last minute of cooking.
Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine tomatoes, 2 cloves garlic, vinegar, basil, pepper flakes and salt; set aside.
In a large nonstick skillet on medium-high, heat 1 tsp oil, tilting skillet to coat bottom lightly. Add zucchini and bell pepper and cook for 4 minutes or until edges begin to brown, stirring frequently. Add remaining 2 cloves garlic and cook for 15 seconds, stirring constantly. Remove from heat, stir in tomato mixture and drizzle with remaining 1 tbsp oil. Cover to keep warm.
Drain penne-bean mixture, place in a serving bowl, sprinkle evenly with rosemary and ¾ cup cheese. Spoon zucchini mixture over top and finish with remaining ¼ cup cheese.
A hot bowl of stracciatella is the perfect antidote to a chill in the bones. Stracciatella means “little rags” in Italian and pertains to the straggly ribbons formed when eggs are drizzled in and cooked. Often, pastina is used in this soup, but beans are a heartier and less processed substitute. Parmesan rind adds an amazing savory quality, but freshly grated cheese will also do the trick.