Monday, July 5, 2010

A Break from the Bakes

Not for too long, though! My kitchen does, believe it or not, actually produce savoury food as well as sugar, chocolate or fruit laden goodies. The problem is that, like my baking, I tend to get into a "food rut" as I'm only cooking for one. I have been churning out some decent meals for myself lately though, and as a bonus even remembered to photograph them, so yay for blog fodder! With the warmer weather here now (and hopefully some garden goodies soon to follow!) I have added inspiration every time I go to the market.

Just like when I found gorgeous heads of broccoli last week - they were a rich emerald, not like the "sagey" green of the winter's offerings, and packed with tiny, sweet florets. I had to snap a head or two up on sight, knowing that somehow that veggie would be given a starring role in whatever that week's dinner menus had. I didn't want to overshadow the beauty of the fresh broccoli with a heavy, cheesy sauce or by cooking the heck out of it. I detest pasta salad as a rule, but somewhere along the line the idea of tossing pasta with blanched broccoli lodged itself in my head as a brand new craving. In my opinion, when you have broccoli, there's almost nothing better to jazz it up with a meal than the brightness of a lemon - zest and juice. The only other topping I adore as much is Louisiana hot sauce!

So a lemony, peppery pasta and broccoli dish it would be. As I thought about that night's meal more, and caught Rachael Ray on TV that afternoon, it occurred to me - cacio e pepe. Obviously it would be a heavily modified version of the classic Roman meal, but I had my springboard. No hot sauce, but two kinds of pepper, and for the "cheese" component I'd be able to break out my vegan Parmesan that I has searched for for weeks! The flavours were such a success to me that I had it several nights in a row... see what I mean about my "cooking ruts"?

Hopefully the other participants in Marye's Real Food... Real Quick challenge and Ruth's Presto Pasta Nights (via Helen's blog Fuss Free Flavours) find this dish a tasty twist to routine!

Low-Fat Lemony Cacio e Pepe
Serves 1
1/2 tbsp coarse ground pepper
1 tsp lemon pepper
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp garlic powder
2 tbsp rice Parmesan
2 oz (uncooked) OrgraN Essential Fibre Rice And Corn Spirals (or your favourite pasta)
Broccoli, to serve

  1. In a small dish, combine pepper, lemon pepper, salt, garlic powder and rice Parmesan. Set aside.
  2. Cook pasta in boiling, salted water 6-7 minutes, until al dente. Reserve 1/4 cup of the pasta water and drain, then return to the pot.
  3. Add pepper mixture and enough reserved pasta water to form a slight coating on the pasta. Serve immediately.
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 219.0 
Total Fat: 2.5 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 230.0 mg
Total Carbs: 39.0 g
Dietary Fiber: 10.0 g
Protein: 10.0 g


  1. Sarah this sounds dynamite! My friend Stacy has a Meals on Mondays Link-up she started. If you'd like to link back to your post for other foodies to read, here's here post for this week!

    Ciao Baby!

  2. I love finding good pasta dishes for one! This looks so delicious.


Thanks for the feedback!