Sunday, December 30, 2012

Gluten Free Artichoke Pasta!

Ever have one of those days where nothing turns out the way you’d planned? Well today was one of those days. I don’t know why…but for whatever reason, I found myself saying “whoops!” a lot more than usual.
Roxy, takin a snooze :)
It started with dinner. I had planned to make GF, dairy free, eggplant “parmesan” — but the eggplant that we brought home from the store was all brown and mushy on the inside. ((It looked and felt like a beauuuutiful eggplant from the outside!!)) OK, no problem! We have freezer staples–like artichokes–I’ll just make something with those!
super artichoke pasta w/ warm & toasty pine nuts!
After dinner, I wanted to post a healthy, happy tummy dessert…so I made gorgeous caramelized bananas with a vegan, chocolate ganache, garnished with crushed peanuts. I plated it creatively, decorated the plate — the whole 9 yards. Took pictures on my mom’s Droid…yadda yadda yadda. I go to upload for the blog…..none of the pictures saved because the battery was low. And…only 3 pics from dinner saved. :/
But that’s ok! We all need a day like today to keep us “on our toes” and to practice tolerance. Today reminded me the importance of being able to “roll with the punches.”
So what did I make for dinner? Artichoke pasta with toasted pine nuts and broiled grouper!
mmm...with a garnish of roasted cherry tomatoes & garlic
Here’s what you’ll need:
1 cup frozen artichoke hearts
6 button mushrooms, sliced
1/2 red onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup white wine
1 small can diced tomatoes
1/4 tsp dried oregano and basil
handful pine nuts, toasted
10 basil leaves, chiffonade
a few capers per plate, drained and rinsed
Saute the onions in 1 tsp EVOO (Extra Virgin Olive Oil). After 5 minutes, add in the garlic. Stir it in, and then add your mushrooms and herbs.  Let them cook down for about 5 minutes, until they release their moisture. Then add your artichokes. After 3 minutes, add your wine and let it reduce for about 2 minutes.  Then, add your tomatoes. Let it warm through for about 5 minutes. Right before you serve, stir in most of your fresh basil, saving some for a garnish. Also garnish with pine nuts and capers.
Next: the grouper!
I broiled this outstanding, wild, ocean-caught fish from Lobsta Bakes with 1 tsp EVOO, salt, pepper, lemon zest and juice, and fresh dill. Oh my Gosh, it was so delicious. Moist and full of flavor, with a beautiful crust. This fish is wonderful because it is flakey, but it is also a more “meaty” fish. MMM!
the not-so-artistic, 1-of-3 pics from dindin :)
For a meal that was thrown together at the last minute, it was pretty darn good! The artichokes are so wonderful and earthy, and they pair so nicely with the crisp white wine, and the warm, nutty, pine nuts. The tomatoes gave it a nice body, while the basil was fresh and lovely, finished off with a *zing* from the capers. All and all, it was a delicious, healthy meal! Give it a try!

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