Saturday, December 13, 2008
A few weeks ago a friend asked me to post some budget friendly meals on my blog. The subject seemed to come up again and again in conversations I had, so I pitched a story about it to my dear sweet editor Gwenn Friss at the Cape Cod Times.
Gwenn loved the idea and the story ran this week along with photos of a meal I made from a recipe given to me by Kim Concra, a Nutrition and Food Safely Specialist at the Cape Cod Cooperative Extension.
This is one of the simplest dinner recipes I’ve ever made and it was so delicious I’m making it again this week. The photo above follows the Cooperative Extension recipe exactly, and the ingredients only cost $6.63 for a meal that fed four people with leftovers for my lunch the next day. That’s $1.33 a serving.
The point of the article was how to create inexpensive, but tasty meals. I have to confess that I added Kalamata olives after I took the photo, because they go so well with the feta cheese and I simply love them. Also, when I make this again, I will sauté up some onions, garlic and peppers because they add a lot of bang for the buck.
My recipe reflects the changes I plan to make, but I promise it is still an inexpensive and very fast dinner that is tasty enough that I will be making it again and again, especially on those nights when I just need a quick and easy dinner.
If you’re looking for more budget friendly tips, you can read the article here.
Greek Pasta with Tomatoes & White Beans
Adapted from a recipe courtesy from Cape Cod Cooperative Extension
Yield: 4 servings
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 15 minutes
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 red pepper, diced
2 (14.5 ounce) cans diced tomatoes with basil, garlic and oregano
1 (19 ounce) can cannellini beans or other white beans, rinsed and drained
1 (10 ounce) bag fresh spinach, chopped (about 8 cups)
4 cups hot cooked penne (about 1/2 pound uncooked tubular shaped pasta
1/2 cup (2 ounces) finely crumbles feta cheese
1/4 cup Kalamata olives, pitted
Sauté onions, garlic and peppers in olive oil in a large pan over medium low heat until tender, about five minutes. Add tomatoes and beans and bring to boil. Reduce heat; simmer 10 minutes. Add spinach and olives; cook two minutes or until spinach wilts, stirring occasionally. Place 1 cup cooked pasta on each of four plates; top each serving with 1 1/4 cup sauce and 2 tablespoons feta cheese.
For a printable recipe click here