A Simple Pasta Dish

I normally cook vegetarian a few nights a week, but in order to save money I’ve increased it to most nights. Plus, I just like vegetarian food.

Tonight’s dinner was a quick pasta dish, perfect for weeknights after a long day. Is it a knock-your-socks-off recipe? No. But it’s darn good for so little work and so few ingredients (and most of them being stuff I normally keep in the pantry anyhow).

Penne with Tomatoes, Rosemary and Balsamic Vinegar

(adapted from The Complete Italian Vegetarian Cookbook, Jack Bishop)

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 medium onion, minced

1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary

1 28-ounce can whole tomatoes, drained and chopped

Salt anf freshly ground pepper

1 pound penne or ziti

2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar

Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

1) Bring 4 quarts water to a boil in a large pot for cooking the pasta.

2) Heat the oil in a large skillet, Add the onion and saute over medium heat until translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in the rosemary and cook for 30 seconds to release it’s flavor.

3) Add the tomataoes and salt and pepper to taste. Simmer until the sauce thickens, about 10 minutes. Adjust seasonings.

4) When the water comes to a boil, add salt to taste and the penne or ziti. Cook until al dente and then drain.

5) Stir the vinegar into the tomato sauce and toss with the pasta, mixing well. Divide among individual bowls and serve immediately with the grated cheese passed separately at the table.

4 servings

Alongside, I served a green salad with my new favorite salad dressing:

Creamy Garlic Dressing

(adapted from Kosher by Design Lightens Up, Susie Fishbein)

5 tablespoons low-fat mayonnaise

2 tablespoons sugar

3 tablespoons white vinegar

1 tablespoon water

3 cloves fresh garlic, minced

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Whisk ingredients together in a medium bowl.

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