Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Broccoli and Chickpea Pasta

On Democracy Now this past Monday, Amy Goodman interviewed Michael Pollan about his new book "Cooked" (which I immediately requested from the library).  It was a very good interview but his final line really hit me.  He said "Cooking is the key to health".  I feel like this is something people need to be reminded of daily until we become a country of home cooks.  Everyone knows that home food is healthier than restaurant food.  It is also cheaper.  Also, eating family meals helps kids become better people.   There are no downsides to home cooking.  So why won't more people cook?!

I am very diligent about making out a weekly food plan and creating a grocery list from that.  It is the most important step in sticking to a budget and not wasting food.  This week, though, I decided to just wing it.  I bought broccoli, asparagus, spinach, Swiss chard, avocados, and cilantro and decided to figure it out as I went.  This is a terrible idea!  But I did manage to come up with this recipe last night at the last minute and we all liked it.  I doubt I'll have the same luck the rest of the week.  But whatever we end up eating, it will be home cooking!












Broccoli and Chickpea Pasta

1 tablespoon olive oil
5 cloves of garlic, sliced
1 pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
Zest of one lemon
1 can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 pound penne or your preferred pasta shape

2 crowns of broccoli cut into bite-size pieces
Juice of one lemon
salt and pepper to taste

In a large skillet, saute the garlic in oil for 1-2 minutes until it starts to sizzle.  Add the pepper flakes and lemon zest and stir to combine.  Add the chickpeas.  Cook for 10 minutes stirring often.

Boil the pasta for the time stated on the package.  When there are 5 minutes left, add the broccoli to the boiling water.

Add the pasta and broccoli to the chickpea mixture and cook for one minute.  Add salt and pepper as desired.  Right before serving, add the lemon juice to the pan and stir to combine.
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