When it comes to pasta, I am a bit of a purist. There are certain brands I favour, my cooking time is a strong “al dente”, I hardly ever dream of sprinkling Parmesan over it unless it’s an integral part of the sauce and, until a few years ago, I would never consider any dried pasta that was not durum wheat. I willingly experimented with rice pasta (awful), buckwheat (not so bad), spelt (actually kind of like it) but my biggest innovation in the pasta realm has been whole wheat. I have been eating whole wheat anything for years but, somehow, whole wheat pasta always seemed just not right.
In reality, the slight nuttiness of whole wheat pasta enhances most vegetable dishes, especially those containing green leafy vegetables. I still wouldn’t use it for seafood but for kale, cabbage, zucchini, any pesto, cherry tomatoes…you get the idea…it works really well.
Here is a simple Italian sausage and bok choy recipe.
1 onion, sliced thin
3 bunches of bok choy, cleaned and roughly chopped
1 pound whole wheat pasta
2 links of spicy Italian sausage (about 1 pound)
2 T olive oil
1 T tomato paste
Heat the oil in a pan over medium/high heat and add the onions. Cook until softened, a few minutes.
Add the tomato paste and stir. In the meantime, start cooking the pasta in salted, boling water.
Add the bok choy and a few tablespoons of the pasta cooking water. Cook until the greens are wilted. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.
Drain the pasta and combine it in a bowl with the sauce. Serve with Parmesan if desired.