It is hard to make a healthy dinner when you haven’t been to the grocery store in a week. Planning our meals and sticking to a grocery list not only helps me stick to a food budget, but helps me make healthier choices. When my fridge is full of fresh veggies, I am less likely to order takeout or go out for dinner.
Last night presented a bit of a dilemma in this regard. I had a fridge full of random bits and pieces, and a time crunch, since I was at TurboKick class until 7:15. We did stop at a farm stand on Sunday and pick up an eggplant and more peas. So I decided to throw all the miscellaneous veggies in the fridge into some sort of pasta sauce.
- 2 small carrots, sliced
- 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- salt and pepper
- 1/2 small eggplant, chopped
- 2/3 cup fresh peas, shelled
- 1 1/2 cups canned diced tomatoes
- 1 cup broccoli (this was leftover, already steamed)
- 1 cup zucchini, chopped (also leftovers)
- 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
- parsley and chives, chopped
- 1/2 cup part skim ricotta cheese
- 1/2 pound penne pasta
I added the carrot, onion, and garlic to the saute pan over medium. When they were soft I added the eggplant and tomatoes. (You could saute the eggplant in the first step, but it will absorb a lot of the oil and get a little mushy). I added a pinch of Italian seasoning and salt and pepper. I let that cook on low for 15 minutes. Then I threw in the fresh peas, and the leftover veggies. Once the peas were tender I added parsley and chives. Then I tossed it all with the pasta and about 1/2 cup of the pasta water, since it looked a little dry.
I mixed some parsley, chives, and black pepper into the ricotta cheese and served it on top of the pasta.
This was good (and healthy!) for a bunch of random leftovers and 40 minutes of effort. You could probably make it in 30 if you didn’t have to shell your own peas. Or if you didn’t eat half while you were shelling them…..