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Whole Grain Pasta w/ Chickpeas and Escarole

By Todd Midgett | In Nutrition & Recipes, Recipe of the Week | on March 10, 2011

Here’s a great recipe that I found on the Food Network website that I really liked!  Plus it’s very inexpensive to make and very simple.

FNMWholeGrainPastaWithChi_s3x4_med 

Ingredients

  • 2 cups whole-grain penne
  • 1 head escarole, roughly chopped
  • 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more to taste
  • 1/4 cup capers, drained and patted dry (optional)
  • 5 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 1/2 cup roughly chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 28-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes, crushed slightly,
  • liquid reserved
  • 1 15.5-ounce can chickpeas, drained, rinsed and patted dry
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese, plus more for garnish


Directions

Cook the pasta according to the package directions; add the escarole during the last 2 minutes, cover and do not stir. Remove the escarole with tongs; set aside. Drain the pasta, reserving 1/2 cup cooking liquid. Meanwhile, if you’re using capers, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the capers and fry until crisp, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate.

Add the remaining 3 tablespoons oil to the skillet. Cook the garlic, parsley and red pepper flakes until the garlic toasts slightly, 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, chickpeas, a pinch of salt and the bay leaves. Cook until the tomatoes and chickpeas brown, about 6 minutes. Add the escarole and reserved tomato juice and cook until the sauce thickens slightly, about 4 more minutes. Remove and discard the bay leaves.

Add the cooked pasta to the skillet and toss with the sauce; season with salt and pepper. (If the sauce is thick, add some reserved pasta water.) Stir in the cheese and top with fried capers, if using, and more cheese.

Per Serving: Calories 540; Total Fat 19 g; (Sat Fat 4 g, Mono Fat 11 g, Poly Fat 2.6 g); Protein 21 g; Carb 79 g; Fiber 15 g; Cholesterol 9 mg; Sodium 800 mg

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