Shrimp and Pasta with VeggiesThis is a fairly simple recipe that is a great comfort food for a cold day and uses vegetables easily available in the fall and winter. Additionally it is a good meal to fight winter blues as it has the carbohydrates that we all so crave this time of year - but they are the good carbs, or complex carbs.
A Word about Complex Carbohydrates
Whole wheat pastas, in addition to whole grains, beans, potatoes, corn and other vegetables, are broken down more slowly that simple carbohydrates (sugars and ingredients ending in "ose" - glucose, fructose etc). Because they are broken down more slowly, they don't cause a spike in your body's glucose levels and help you feel full longer. As well, they contain more nutrition and fiber.
(serves 2 - with leftovers)
- 8 oz. whole wheat Farfalle (bow tie) Pasta - Penne works well too
- 4-5 Roma tomatoes - cut into 1/2" pieces
- 1/2 lb. of asparagus - cut into 1 inch pieces
- 6-8 medium sized shitake mushrooms, sliced thin
- 3 cloves of garlic - chopped
- 1/4 cup chopped onions
- 3/4 cup of chicken broth
- 2 pinches of oregano
- 1/2 tsp of red pepper flakes
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- salt and pepper
- grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 tbsp fresh chopped parsley
- Bring a pot of water to boil and cook pasta as per package instructions.
- When pasta is cooked, drain well and return to pot.
- In a large skillet, heat olive oil and add garlic, onions, mushrooms, a pinch of oregano and 1/4 tsp. red pepper. Sautée for 2-3 minutes, add tomatoes, asparagus, salt and pepper. Stir and continue to sautée for a few more minutes. Vegetables should be crisp but cooked. Add chicken broth, stir, and turn heat on low to simmer.
- In a separate pan sautée shrimp, and remaining oregano and red pepper until shrimp is just cooked through.
- Finally, stir shrimp into the vegetable mixture.
- Portion pasta to plates, spoon out the vegetables and shrimp. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and fresh parsley, if desired.
Shrimp: Shrimp are not small in their nutrient density. Shrimp are an excellent source of selenium and low-fat, low-calorie protein--a four ounce serving of shrimp supplies 23.7 grams of protein (that's 47.4% of the daily value for protein) for only 112 calories and less than a gram of fat. they are a good source of vitamin B12. Shrimp do have the reputation of raising bad (LDL) cholesterol, but it was found that they raise good cholesterol (HDL) even more. Eggs, by comparison, raise LDL levels more than shrimp, and HDL levels less than shrimp. Also, shrimp are an excellent source of selenium, and omega-3 fatty acids, both of which protect against cancer.
Shitake Mushrooms: Recent studies have shown the ability of shitake mushrooms to help protect us against cardiovascular diseases. They are recognized as a very good, non-animal food source of iron. Shitake mushrooms are also an excellent source of vitamins B2, B5 and B6 and six minerals - manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, copper and zinc Finally, they are a very good source of dietary fiber, protein, magnesium, and vitamin D.
- Asparagus Health Benefits - review here
- Garlic Health Benefits - review here
- Roma Tomato Health Benefits - review here
- Onions fall in the same family as garlic as have very similar health benefits
- Williams-Sonoma Comfort Food: Warm and Homey, Rich and Hearty
- Comfort Food Fix: Feel-Good Favorites Made Healthy
- Paleo Comfort Foods: Homestyle Cooking for a Gluten-Free Kitchen
- The Best of Clean Eating 2: Over 200 Recipes with Cleaned-Up Comfort Foods and Fast Family Dinners
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