Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Organic Conchiglie (seashell) Pasta alla Bolognese

I've been reading a lot about Italy recently in preparation for a visit we're planning! We'll get great pasta and pizza there - I've been told that eggless pasta is common, and pizza dough is almost always vegan. From the UK Vegan Society's Vegan Passport, I already have this list of items to spout off that we can eat: Patate, riso, pasta (senza uova), fagioli, ortaggi, pomodori, frutta, noci, funghi; pane o pasticcini prodotti senza utilizzare grassi de origine animale; cereali e derivati, ecc. Zuppe e salse possono essere preparate utillizzando dadi di origine vegetale senza estratti di carne di ogni tipo. Per la cottura si possono utilizzare olii o margarine vegetali evitando burro e altri grassi di origine animale (es. Strutto). Grazie.

Perhaps because of my reading, I made what turned out to be a very nice pasta dinner tonight. I bought some seashell-shaped organic pasta made at the Montebello Monastery in Marche, Italy. The shells were thick and chewy, holding on to the sauce well. For the sauce, I used up the vegan Bolognese sauce that I had found in late July, and added lemon olive oil, Merlot wine, purple bell peppers, sliced garlic, red jalapeno pepper pieces, fresh oregano and basil pieces, small green olive chunks (I added these shortly before serving the sauce just to distribute them but not cook them), and a little salt; of course, to get a flavorful sauce, I let it simmer on low heat for some time. I sprinkled some vegan Parma! "Parmesan cheese" when I served it.

I also prepared a salad with m√Ęche and heirloom tomatoes with rosemary vinegar and artisinal extra virgin olive oil, as well as an organic wheat demi-baguette. Mangiare per vivere!

Yesterday, we went to a film festival and, in order to have time to work out at our exercise facility, we ended up having to eat out. We stopped at Whole Foods Market and ate a variety of food from the hot and cold salad bars. As I had already mentioned, I went out to a South Indian restaurant on Sunday with and by request of a friend who used to live here and who was just visiting for one night. We went with my parents and had a good time; I had coconut-vegetable uttapam and shared idli (steamed rice cakes) and spicy sambar soup (idli and sambar is the prototypical South Indian appetizer), as well as pakora appetizers.


At Sun Sep 24, 04:45:00 PM EDT, Blogger Just call me Orangie said...

mmm...That pasta sure looks good *stomach rumbles*. I tried to do something like that with the soybean pasta I got at Whole Foods last week. I thought the pasta was actually really good, kinda got all tangled up though after it was cooked :)

At Mon Sep 25, 04:23:00 AM EDT, Blogger Dilip said...

We loved the pasta. Some hints to keep your pasta from getting tangled: add the pasta only when the water is at a rolling boil, with a little olive oil added to the water. Use a large pan so the noodles have a lot of space. As soon as the pasta is done, drain it and run a little cool water through it, draining again. Thanks for your kind words, j.c.m.o.!

At Sat Feb 03, 09:10:00 PM EST, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your article is very informative and helped me further.

Thanks, David


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