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Wednesday, August 31, 2011


Once considered a fattening food, pasta is now recognised as an important part of a healthy diet. The variety of shapes is almost endless. Low in fat and high in complex carbohydrates, it provides plenty of long-term energy.
Pasta can be plain,made with egg, or flavored with ingredients such as tomato or spinach. Plain Durum wheat pasta is used for straight long shapes, such as spaghetti. Wholewheat pasta is made from wholewheat flour and contains more fiber than plain durum wheat pasta. It has a slightly chewy texture and nutty flavour and takes longer to cook.
Although pasta is itself a low-fat food, it is important to take care when choosing the accompanying sauce, as overloading on cheese or cream can soon transform pasta into a high-fat food.
A pasta dish is done in four stages. First cooking the pasta, then making the sauce, sauteing the vegetables and finally combining them. 
Cooking instructions are given on the packaging, but always taste just before the end of the given time to prevent overcooking. 
Pesto is a sauce, originating in the region of northern Italy, and traditionally consists of crushed garlic, basil and pine nuts blended with olive oil and Parmigiano Reggiano (cheese).There are other types of pesto that can be made. ( I will post the recipe when I make Pasta with Pesto and white sauce shortly)
 Another  popular sauce called Marinara sauce is used in this dish, which is basically a tomato pasta sauce cooked in olive oil along with onion, garlic and herbs. This can be made at home.( I am posting this recipe separately)
To add more flavor and taste to this dish, vegetables like green pepper, carrot, green beans eggplant,mushroom and zucchini are sauteed and used. Thus the benefit of a full meal is had.
Finally the cooked pasta, sauce and vegetables are combined and cooked in a pan on stove top and served hot with cheese sprinkled on top OR the dish is baked in the oven with cheese topping.
We made this dish with store bought Marinara sauce and roasted garlic Alfredo sauce, then after combining the cooked pasta with sauce, sauteed onion and garlic, baked in the preheated oven for 20min to 30 min.
I use to make this dish in a pan and place in a plate for each person, sprinkled with cheese as required and Microwave it for few seconds till the cheese melts.By doing so generous measure of cheese can be used for children and we should not mind as this dish is not frequently made.
This is an all time favourite to all kids and even grown up children.By posting this, I think I fulfilled the wish of my niece who is following my blog and I am sure the purpose of giving the detailed health benefits will help her  to make her mom prepare this for her frequently  and keep her energetic to perform good in her studies.
In fact this dish can be recommended to be served in all coaching centres for better results.Not a bad idea Ravee isn't it.But LESS cheese.Here is the recipe for you, which was as a draft for long time. I waited to make sauce at home and post it together hence the delay. I am sure we can also get the ready made pesto and  pasta sauce in Super market in Hi-tech city in Hyderabad. 


Pasta (fusilli)400 gm
Onion1 no
Garlic 3 cloves
Pasta sauce1 cup
Olive oil1 tblsp
Mozarella cheese1/2 cup
Dry basil1 tsp
Pepper1 tsp
SaltTo taste

Preheat oven to 375 deg F.Cook pasta as per direcions on the package, drain and set aside.
Heat oil in a pan and add crushed garlic, chopped onion and basil and saute.
When onion is done, add the tomato sauce, salt and pepper and mix well.( I used Marinara sauce and Roasted garlic Alfredo pasta sauce separately in two different pans) 
Transfer pasta to a baking dish along with cooked sauce.Add cheese(if using parmesan cheese too) and toss gently to coat.
Spread evenly and sprinkly mozarella cheese and bake until golden brown and hot thoughout,about 30 minutes.Serve hot.

Pasta should be cooked in a large pan of boiling water to allow the strands or shapes to expand, and stirred occasionally to prevent them from sticking together. Do not add oil to the cooking water, as it makes the pasta slippery and prevents it from absorbing the sauce.
The quantity and kinds of cheese to be used is at your discretion.


  1. thank you periamma...simply love it..

  2. super lunch box dish :) mum can surely send it 4 lunch sumtym instead f noodles