Yes, You Can Eat Carrot Tops

We’ve been eating a lot of carrots from the CSA recently. And they always come with the tops on. So I’ve started using them as I would any herb-a-licious green. Just make sure to wash the sand and soil out of them before you move them to your cutting board. Like spinach and other greens, they can pick up a great deal of grit.

Check out this Carrot Greens and Mushrooms pasta toss.

Cook some pasta (I used gluten-free fettuccine noodles) according to the package directions

In a saute pan add:
1/2 C olive oil
1 small yellow onion, diced
1 bunch carrot greens, rough chopped
8 oz mushrooms, I used beech mushrooms this time and broke up the colony by hand rather than slicing them
3+ cloves garlic, diced
*optional– add some sliced, precooked chicken sausage

Saute for about 8 minutes on medium high. The onions should be cooked through and the mushrooms should be juicy. The carrot greens will wilt considerably.

Drain hot pasta and toss. Add in

salt and pepper to taste
a little reserved starchy pasta water to thin sauce

Serve vegan as is or add a little grated parm.


Pasta with Baby Greens and Mushrooms

Greenhouses are producing wonderful greens all over the south and two of our favorite things are sprouting: arugula and spinach! I thought this would be a great opportunity to use the truffle-infused oil I got over the holidays.

Pasta, I used gluten free spaghetti, but any shape will do

1 bunch baby spinach
1 bunch aruluga
1 pint mushrooms
3+ cloves garlic
1/3 C olive oil or flavored olive oil, I used truffle infused oil
salt and pepper to taste

Cook pasta according to directions.
Saute mushrooms in oil with minced garlic. Saute on medium-low heat to avoid burning the garlic. While mushrooms are cooking through, rough chop spinach and arugula. Make sure it was well washed as spinach is often grown in sandy soil.

Drain pasta and toss with hot mushrooms and oil. Remove from heat. Toss in greens and allow to wilt. Season with salt and pepper. Dress with more olive oil if desired.

Parm and Parsley Pasta

Simple easy side dish that is sure to please! Try it as a pasta salad base recipe or top with grilled veggies, meat, or fish.

1 lb gluten-free fusilli

2 TB butter
2 TB olive oil
5+ cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 + Cup grated parmesan cheese
1 bunch parsley rough chopped
salt and pepper to taste

While pasta is boiling, heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add butter, oil, and garlic. Heat until just before garlic browns. Remove from heat.

Drain pasta well. Toss into hot butter-oil. Sprinkle in parsley and cheese, salt and pepper. Coat evenly. Serve hot as a side dish OR chill and add chopped raw veggies for an easy pasta salad.

3 Cheese Penne with Baby Broccoli

Baked pasta dishes are the eewy gooey food gluten-free folks seem to miss the most. In the “About Gluten Free” section (visit the right side menu bar) I explain pasta brands that are a best bet for fooling even you Italian guests.

Well what do you do with the wrong brand of mushy, never right gluten-free pasta? Bake it! Baked on sauces will transform gluey mess into gooey fabulous. This cheese sauce is so velvety smooth, it could hide anything.

16 oz gluten-free penne, cooked and drained, not rinsed

1 lb sweet baby broccoli

3 Cheese Sauce:

1 TB butter
1 TB olive oil
2 TB rice flour
2 Cups milk
1/2 Cup parmesan, divided
4 oz goat cheese
4 oz mozzarella

Make a roux with the butter, oil, and flour over medium heat. Cook 3 minutes until rice flour is no longer raw. Slowly whisk in milk. When smooth, add 1/2 the parmesan and all of the goat and mozzarella cheeses. Whisk until smooth and bubbly. Remove from heat.

Cut broccoli into bite sized pieces. I cut baby broccoli a little larger because it is tender and sweet. I like the broccoli to be as long as the pasta. Place the broccoli in the bottom of your strainer. Drain pasta water over the broccoli. This will flash cook the outside of the broccoli so that it will retain its color well while baking.

Stir drained pasta and broccoli into cheese sauce. Transfer to baking dish and top with remaining parmesan. Bake at 350 degrees F for 20-30 minutes, until golden brown delicious.

Spinach Lemon Pesto

We’re getting more fresh spinach from our CSA than basil. After last years seemingly unending basil harvest, I’m shocked that I miss basil. This should cure your winter pesto woes. This is a raw pesto. It can be heated with pasta or served with raw veggie noodles.

Served with Gluten-Free Pasta!

In your food processor

1/2 lb baby spinach, washed and dried
1/3 Cup evoo
1/4 Cup lemon juice

handful of pine nuts or walnuts, about 1/3 Cup

1-2 tsp salt
fresh ground black pepper to taste

Blend until smooth. It is easier to add the spinach in stages because it is so bulky. This keeps well in the fridge for a little over a week because of the high vitamin C content.

Published in: on February 12, 2010 at 8:57 am  Comments (4)  
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Lazy Asian Pasta Toss

Sometimes, there is just no energy to cook. Between holiday entertaining, while studying for final exams, or just because it’s a busy day. Get some quality pre-made sauces and seasonings for these times.

2 Cups cut up cooked chicken (grab a rotisserie bird and shred, use left overs from a home roast, or quickly broil some yourself.)
14 oz can bamboo shoots
8 oz mushrooms, sliced
1 Cup carrots, in sticks
8 oz mung bean sprouts
1/3 Cup hoisin sauce
3 TB garlic chili paste
3 TB soy sauce
2 TB sesame oil

1 lb gluten free pasta, cooked and drained

Set pasta to boil.

Heat wok with sesame oil. Toss in mushrooms and carrots. Stir fry until crisp tender. Add bamboo and cooked chicken. Toss in hoisin sauce, soy sauce, and chili paste. Heat through.

Drain pasta. Toss with meat and veggies to coat thoroughly with sauce. Add mung bean sprouts. Stir gently to incorporate. Serve immediately.

**Switch to tempeh for an awesome veggie dish!

Lazy Low-Carb Italian – 4 Ingredients!

Spaghetti squash is cool. Plants do amazing things. Here is a super easy dish that’s perfect for a lazy weekend meal.

Prep 1 spaghetti squash for baking. Slice in half long-ways and scoop seeds and stringy stuff. Bake at 375 degrees F for 40 minutes, until squash done.

2 Ingredient sauce:

1 26 oz jar of super-yummy organic marinara sauce
4 Italian chicken sausages, removed from casing

Heat sausage over medium heat and break apart into fine crumbs. Brown completely. Stir in jarred sauce. Cover and simmer 10+ minutes.

Shred squash with a fork to make spaghetti strings. Top with simple sauce. Sprinkle with parmesan.

Anyone can make this.

Skillet Lasagna

Ditch the Hamburger Helper and eat REAL food. It’s okay to cheat and use a jar of organic marinara since there are so many yummy ones on the market now. This is a quick meal that’s perfect for hungry families.

1 Cup diced red onion
1 lb ground beef
8 oz mushrooms, sliced
2 TB Italian seasoning (salt free)
13 oz can spinach drained OR frozen spinach
1 jar marinara sauce (26 oz)
1/2 Cup Parmesan Cheese, grated
1/2 Cup mozzarella cheese

1 lb cork screw or penne pasta cooked al dente and drained (Tinkyada makes a fab, firm gluten-free pasta)


In your largest skillet or chef’s pan, brown ground beef and drain. Add onion, mushrooms, and dry seasoning. Saute until onions are soft, about 4 minutes. Add spinach and marinara. Heat to bubbling, about 7 minutes, to let flavors combine. Toss in pasta and mozzarella until fully incorporated. Simmer 3 more minutes to season pasta. Topp with paremsan and serve.

Great with a green salad or a fresh fruit dessert.

Sub mushrooms or veggie crumble for a hearty vegetarian meal!

Gluten Free Mac and Cheese

Cheesy Goodness

Sometimes, you need comfort food. Also, I’m learning of more and more small children who feel as awful when they eat gluten as I do. So for all you gluten-free kiddos, and big kiddos too, you can still eat mac and cheese! This recipe is just as easy as the boxed crap and filled with real food nutrition!

1 lb gluten-free pasta, cooked accordingly

For the cheese sauce:

2 TB rice flour

2 TB butter

1 to 1 1/2 Cups skim milk

3 TB nutritional yeast

1 to 1 1/2 Cups cheddar, swiss, parmesan, or other blend of your favorite cheeses

salt and pepper to taste

Add flour and butter to a cold pan. Heat over medium whisking constantly to blend. The roux will begin to bubble. Let to cook for about 1 full minute and begin adding the milk. I use a range here because some people prefer a thinner cheese sauce. I like mine to stick. Whisk in the milk a few tablespoons at a time until all of the milk is incorporated and you have a thick white cream sauce. Bring that mixture just to a bubble. Add the yeast and half the cheese. Whisk to combine. Add the remaining cheese and salt and pepper to taste. Make sure this cheese sauce is well seasoned. The plain macaroni will reduce the intensity of the cheese sauce flavor by dispersing it.

Stir in drained hot macaroni. Mix well. Serve as a main dish, side dish, or with veggies or meats. Adding green peas and a few cans of tuna is wonderful. The organic hot dog slices are a big hit with a certain someone at my house.

With vegan milks and cheeses, this recipe can be made dairy-free. The proportions and techniques work very well with dairy substitutes. A tiny pinch of hot pepper can tame the residual sweetness of some non-dairy milks and cheeses.

With Organic Hot-Dog slices

With Organic Hot-Dog slices

Spicy Tomato Cream Sauce with Gluten-Free Penne

This is a wonderfully flavorful vegetarian pasta dish that is smokey and spicy. The dish can be topped with Italian sausage, chicken, tempeh, or enjoyed as is.


1 Tb evoo

1 purple onion sliced thin

8 oz mushrooms sliced

1 TB Italian seasoning

5 cloves garlic, rough chopped

14 oz canned diced tomatoes

1 pint heavy cream

2 TB crushed red pepper flakes

1/2 Cup parmesan cheese

1 lb gluten-free penne

Put pasta on to boil. Saute garlic, onions, and mushrooms with evoo until carmelization just begins. Add tomatoes and stir to remove brown bits from the bottom. Heat to bubbling. Add red pepper flakes and cream. Stir and reduce heat to simmer. Simmer uncovered for 8-10 minutes until mixture is reduced nearly to 1/2.

Drain pasta well, do not rinse. Stir pasta into simmering sauce. Sprinkle in cheese and serve.

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