Friday, December 10, 2010

Whole Wheat Spagetti with No-Cook Sauce of Tomatoes, Arugula, Olives, and Capers

Start by making the sauce. The inspiring recipe said to remove seeds from the tomatoes before chopping them, but as soon as I read that I said "No way" because I know that much of the flavor in fresh tomatoes is in the jelly around the seeds. (Don't you love those juicy tomatoes !)

I used about 2 cups of chopped arugula, or about 2 generous handfuls before chopping.

I sliced the Kalamata olives rather than cutting them in half so more olive flavor was distributed through out the dish.
I also slightly chopped the capers for the same reason (and used more capers than the recipe said, because I love capers.)

I whisked together the extra-virgin olive oil, minced garlic, and red chili flakes.

Combine the chopped tomatoes, chopped arugula, sliced olives, and chopped capers in a glass or plastic bowl, then pour over the olive oil mixture. Let this sit for 30 minutes.

After 30 minutes, cook the spaghetti in a large pot of salted water, following the cooking time on the package so the spaghetti is perfectly al-dente (still a bit chewy.) I used my favorite Italian whole wheat spaghetti and cooked it exactly 9 minutes.

Drain the spaghetti, then return it to the pot and add the sauce. Stir enough to combine ingredients, seasoning with salt and fresh-ground black pepper to taste, and serve hot. You could serve this with some freshly grated Parmesan cheese if desired, but I didn't think it needed any cheese.

Whole What Spagetti with No-Cook Sauce of Tomatoes, Arugula, Olives, and Capers
(Makes 3-4 servings, recipe adapted slightly from Spaghetti with Tomatoes, Arugula, Capers, and Olives by Rose Gray and Ruth Rogers in Bon Appetit August 2006. I couldn't find the recipe online.)

3 large ripe tomatoes, chopped (the original recipe said to cut out the seeds, but I didn't)
15 Kalamata olives without pits, sliced
2 large handfuls baby arugula, chopped (about 2 cups chopped arugula)
2 T capers, coarsely chopped
3 T extra-virgin olive oil
2 tsp. finely minced or pureed garlic
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes (more or less to taste, this was just a little spicy)
8 oz. whole wheat spaghetti (I love Garofalo Organic Whole Wheat Italian Spaghetti)
salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste

Chop tomatoes, arugula, and capers, and slice Kalamata olives, and combine in a plastic or glass bowl. In a small bowl whisk together olive oil, garlic, and red chile flakes, then pour the olive oil mixture over the tomato-arugula mixture. Stir to combine, then let the sauce sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.

After 30 minutes, bring a medium sized pot of water to a boil, add a generous amount of salt, and cook spaghetti until it's barely al-dente (Pasta should still be a bit chewy. I cooked my spaghetti exactly 9 minutes for al dente, but follow package directions for cooking time.)

Drain spaghetti and return to cooking pot, then add the sauce mixture and stir to gently combine. Season to taste with salt and fresh ground pepper and serve hot.

This doesn't keep well in the fridge, so only make as much as you'll eat right away.

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South Beach Suggestions:
This is a great main dish or side dish for phase 2 or 3 of the South Beach Diet, but be sure to use whole wheat or low carb spaghetti.

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