Remember all those awesome veggies I bought at Eastern Market? I put many of them to good use in a healthy, lower-carb version of an Italian favorite. I’m sharing the recipe in this post… plus a bonus side dish recipe!
BUT FIRST… check this out! A few months ago, I was interviewed by Heather Robertson for her podcast, called “The Half Size Me Show,” which is about inspiring people to lose weight in a healthy way. Heather has lost 170 pounds herself, and has been doing this podcast for a while – I’m episode #234! My interview is called “Why Finding Happiness Means Knowing Yourself with David” and it went live today! Here’s the description:
In this episode of The Half Size Me Show, Heather talks to David about:–why the media paints such a negative image of weight loss–how to tweak weight loss plans to make them work for you–why finding happiness means knowing yourself–and much more!
The podcast is 42 minutes long, and you can listen to it here. And if you’re here because you learned about me from the podcast, WELCOME! Glad you stopped by and I hope you take a look around!
OK! Bring on the recipe! This is my version of pasta primavera, and since I added shrimp to it, I call it…
Shrimp Primavera a la David
Heat one tablespoon olive oil in a big skillet. When it’s hot, add 1.5 teaspoons of chopped garlic. After a minute or so, add in all sorts of veggies. Primavera typically has spring veggies, like asparagus and mushrooms, but I used veggies I had on hand, and the new stuff I got at the farmers market.
- One purple spring onion, sliced
- 1/2 of a yellow onion, chopped (I wanted to use this up)
- 1/2 a green pepper, chopped (I wanted to use this up, too)
- about 16 baby carrots, chopped
- 1 big tomato, chopped
- about 1 cup of chopped zucchini.
I also added a couple tablespoons of the green stems from the spring onion. They’re basically mature scallions. Oh, and I added some salt and pepper.
I let that all cook for about 10 minutes, until everything got soft and tender. Then I got to work making a sauce, in the same skillet. First I dissolved 2 tablespoons of flour in about 4 tablespoons water. This will thicken the sauce, and you dissolve the flour first so it doesn’t get lumpy.
After adding that to the skillet, I added 1 cup chicken stock and 2/3 cup 1% milk (use whatever milk to have). You can also add about 1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese, which I was planning to do, but I forgot.
It’ll be pretty liquidy, so let it simmer, over low heat, to reduce and thicken. This may take 15-20 minutes. While this is happening, cook your pasta. Banza is a Detroit-based company that makes chickpea flour pasta. Like the edamame pasta I mentioned in this post, chickpea flour pasta has about 1/2 the carbs and 3x the protein as regular pasta. Simply put, it’s better for you. I cooked an entire 8-ounce box of Banza rotini.
When the sauce is pretty thick, add the shrimp. I used a 2-pound bag of tail-on shrimp, although my mom pulled the tails off first. I just nestled the shrimp on top in a single layer, then covered the skillet, and they cooked in a couple minutes.
When the shrimp was done, I combined the shrimp/veggie/sauce skillet with the pasta in a big serving bowl, garnished it with a couple tablespoons of fresh, chopped basil and parsley, and that’s it! How does it look?
What’s that next to it? It’s a giant zucchini boat! That’s the bonus recipe I mentioned earlier. If it looks huge, that’s because it is. I made it from this zucchini, after all:
I cut three long slices off the zucchini, then scooped out the seeds, leaving a little trench in the middle.
I drizzled them with a little balsamic, sprinkled on salt and pepper, and roasted them in a 400-degree oven for 40 minutes. Then I pulled them out and added toppings:
- 1.3 ounces of goat cheese per boat
- 1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese per boat
- 1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs, divided between all three.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil, divided between all three.
(You may need to fiddle with the quantities if you don’t happen to have a giant zucchini like I did, but you get the general idea.)
I popped them under the broiler for 2 minutes to brown the crumbs, and that was that!
Together, they made for a delicious dinner. The pasta was creamy and full of flavor, and the zucchini crusty and tender.
Here’s the best part – the calorie count! This recipe makes a LOT of primavera, and 1/8 of the finished product (roughly what I served myself on that plate) was only 261 calories. The zucchini boat was another 266 calories, so that entire plate only had 527 calories!
Keep it up, David!