For much of my upbringing, I was raised in an Italian household (I’m part Italian and part Polish basically). Our Italian household had pasta night every Sunday. I remember the dinners fondly, as well as the midnight snacking on cold pasta straight from the fridge and dipping it in the cold sauce.
These days, sadly, pasta is not my favorite thing to serve because it’s not exactly the most nutritious option in my pantry. But(!), we gotta have fun sometimes and who doesn’t love pasta?
So, this is how we do pasta at our house on pasta night – loaded with veggies.
And, grass-fed butter.
That’s a pasta dish I can actually feel pretty darn good about serving my family.
Here’s what I do…
I (always) use this awesome gluten-free pasta (Jovial).
I make my own sauce if I’m feeling saucy. Otherwise, I grab a jar and add butter to it and let it cook. On this night, I had organic mini heirloom tomatoes from the farmers market and you will see how I put them in a pan filled with grass-fed butter (and some other flavors) and just let them cook for 20 or 30 or 40 minutes. The longer the better because tomatoes are acidic and need time to mellow.
Throw it all together in a bowl, and that’s how we do pasta night in my house. (It’s an easy formula: Pasta + Veggies + Grass-fed Butter(!).
This recipe is really forgiving so don’t worry about exact amounts. It’s here to inspire with these fundamentals.
Remember: pasta + lots of veggies + grass-fed butter.
That’s a solid meal. It’s really satisfying and one serving will do ya.
On this particular night I had:
Pasta, Homemade Tomato Sauce, and Roasted Brussels Sprouts
- Gluten free pasta
- Grass-fed butter (let’s just say… I use a lot, if you didn’t know that already)
- Pressed Garlic or garlic powder
- Onion, if you have… I didn’t. :(
- 1 pound (or more) organic tomatoes, chopped (or a jar of sauce <- no shame there)
- Orange zest, optional
- Fresh rosemary or any fresh herbs
- Sea salt and black pepper
- Pinch sugar, optional, but helps the acidity of tomatoes
For the tomatoes, cook some chopped onion in melted grassfed butter, over medium heat on the stove.
After the onion has cooked a bit, add pressed garlic (or if you lack garlic like I did, add garlic powder – in my defense I was at mom’s for the weekend and her kitchen isn’t stocked like mine.). Add the tomatoes, orange zest, rosemary, salt and pepper.
Let it cook a good 10 to 20 minutes (minimum), on low.
Add more grass-fed butter, if desired.
While it’s cooking, roast some brussels sprouts as detailed below, and start the pasta.
Consider the timing of everything. My brussels sprouts take me about 22 minutes, once the oven is preheated. My pasta takes forever to get the water boiling, and then it’s nine minutes once I drop in the pasta. The sauce is well underway and can be ready by the time the rest of the stuff is done.
- 1 pound (or so) organic brussels sprouts
- 2 to 3 tablespoons Grass-fed ghee
- Sea salt
- Black pepper
- 1 tablespoon water
I put all of the ingredients in a bowl and then dumped them on a rimmed baking sheet, turning them cut-side down. I roast mine at 400 degrees F. It takes about 22 minutes – the first 11 minutes are with foil on top of the roasting pan, to help them steam, and the last 11 minutes the foil is off for finishing them off. I learned the foil trick from America’s Test Kitchen – works like a charm every time.
Putting it all together…
Once the pasta is cooked, hopefully you’ve timed it to finish just as the brussels sprouts are done and the tomato sauce is ready.
Strain the pasta from the water and dump out the water.
Put the pasta back in the pot you cooked the pasta in, add the tomato mixture, add the brussels sprouts, and if you’re like me, add a lot more butter. Oh, and season with extra salt and pepper if needed.
Put it all in a nice big bowl, family style.
Happy Valentine’s Day,