Three pasta recipes if you’re on a diet

13 January 2016

Putting paid to the misguided notion that pasta is fattening, here are three healthy, tasty recipes that are perfect for when you’re watching what you eat.

Three recipes and three handy hints you should always bear in mind: make sure you cook the pasta until it’s al dente (lower glycaemic index, more energy expended on chewing it and more time spent digesting it); go for wholewheat pasta (more nutrients and higher in fibre) and eat it for lunch rather than dinner (to make sure you burn off the energy). Now that’s all clear, let’s get cooking!

Farfalle with avocado and salmon

Avocado and salmon are both rich in omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins and minerals such as magnesium, potassium and zinc. This recipe combines this healthy energy with farfalle cooked in salted water, strained and flavoured with a dash of aromatic olive oil with lemon rind.

Add the fresh, cubed avocado. You can use either fresh or smoked salmon, depending on whether you prefer a warm or cold version. If you go for fresh salmon, cut it into cubes and sauté with salt and a little coriander.

Penne with roasted vegetables

For this recipe you can use whatever vegetables you like: fresh asparagus, courgette, aubergine, carrots or whatever else takes your fancy. Wash the vegetables well, chop them up and arrange on an oven tray together with a couple of fresh tomatoes. Add salt and pepper, drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil and roast for 25 minutes at 200 ºC.

Remember to stir the vegetables regularly.

Meanwhile, cook the penne in plenty of salted water. Strain and sauté the cooked pasta in a frying pan with a dash of aromatic olive oil with chilli pepper and cardamom. Serve with the roasted vegetables.

Spaghetti with king prawns and soya sauce

Peel and cut an onion into chunks. Cut off and clean the tips of a bundle of fresh asparagus. Add the onion and asparagus to a wok or frying pan with a little extra-virgin olive oil, together with some fresh peeled king prawns. When it’s almost ready, add the soya sauce and stir for a couple of minutes.

Now it’s time to add the cooked, strained spaghetti, which should take on all the flavours and aromas of the stir fry, transporting you from the Mediterranean to the Far East.

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