Whole Wheat Pasta Salad with Red Pepper and Artichoke Hearts

The main dish inspired by the Woman’s Health Magazine was a Whole Wheat Pasta Salad with Red Pepper and Artichoke Hearts.  I learned that artichoke’s nutritional value include strengthening of the liver function and gall bladder function, aiding digestion and lowering cholesterol.  Artichoke also contains anti-cancer agents.


This pasta salad recipe is a good way to use whole wheat pasta. This salad is high in fiber and good for your liver.


  • 2 cups whole wheat fusili
  • 1 red pepper, finely diced
  • 3 celery sticks, finely diced
  • 1 bunch of parsley, chopped
  • 1 jar artichokes hearts, drained


  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons mustard
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar


Source: Minoo

Prep time: 15 minutes;  Serves 4


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Lemony Pasta Salad with Peas

This Lemony Pasta Salad with Peas is a lovely side dish for chicken, fish or lamb.


If you’d like to make it a more substantial meal, you can add one can of tuna, drained and flaked.


  • 1 pound short pasta, such as penne or rigatoni
  • 1 package (10 ounce) frozen baby peas or edamame
  • 2 lemons
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, mashed and finely minced
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped parsley
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste


Source: Charlene Dy

Prep time: 10 minutes;  Cook time: 10 minutes;  Serves 6


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Fettuccini with Tuna and Fresh Tomatoes

The second recipe which Minoo demonstrated at the Gilmore Park Church Community Kitchen was a pasta dish.  It is a fast, easy and fresh tasting pasta.  It is made with canned tuna which is usually a pantry item and freshen up with some fresh sweet tomatoes.


This fast and easy Fettuccini with Tuna and Fresh Toamatoes dish is perfect for a family meal on a busy evening.


  • 375g fettuccine or other long pasta
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon each, dried basil and thyme
  • pinch of hot pepper flakes (or to taste)
  • salt
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 cans light tuna (look for Italian tuna packed in olive oil for a more intense flavour tuna); you may replace tuna with 125g chopped smoked salmon and add 1 teaspoon crushed pink or green peppercorns with the garlic or 2 tablespoons drained capers
  • 4 small plum tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup whole or chopped black or green olives (optional)
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil



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Creamy Bow-ties with Broccoli and Ham

In the Gilmore Park Church Community Kitchen, Minoo demonstrated two recipes.  The first recipe is Creamy Bow-ties with Brocoli and Ham.


This creamy pasta dish is simple to prepare and it has vegetable and meat in it to make a complete meal.   This recipe is taken from eat well and it serves 4.


  • 12 oz bow-tie (farfalle) pasta
  • 12 oz broccoli (1 bunch), cut into florets
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 cup half-and-half
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper
  • 8 oz cooked ham, cut into cubes



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Carrot Orzo

This is about the only dish that has the least Greek element in it, except for the feta cheese.  The only similarity with the other dishes is that it is adapted from the same source, i.e. Bon Appetit.  This recipe serves 4.

Karen and Lorna worked together to make this Carrot Orzo side dish.


Orzo is almost like a risotto.  This creamy orzo is a quick to make and delicious side-dish.  It does not need the laborious stirring in making a risotto.


  • 8 ounces peeled baby carrots (about 2 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
  • 1 cup orzo (rice-shaped pasta; about 8 ounces)
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cups low-salt chicken broth
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary



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Making Filled Pasta

Besides making angel hair and fettuccine, Jane also demonstrated to us how to make various filled pasta using the freshly made pasta. To make pasta with filing, begin cutting the pasta sheet while still moist once the pasta sheet had been rolled out to the thinnest stage.

makingpasta-30-300x200Ravioli makingpasta-34-300x200Tortellini (belly button or hat)
makingpasta-18-300x200Mezzalune (half moon) or Agnolotti


  • fresh pasta
  • Grana Padano cheese (a close cousin of Parmigiano-Reggiano but cheaper)
  • cottage cheese
  • egg yolk
  • spinach
  • nutmeg


Click on Read More for the instructions.


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Making Fresh Pasta

Jane demonstrated how to make fresh pasta in the Gilmore Park Church Community Kitchen. I had introduced Jane as a school teacher for 25 years in previous blog. Jane was married to an Italian and she had lived in Italy for 8 years. For the many years Jane lived in Italy, she told us that she still can’t pronounce Italian words with one p and double p differently as the Italian do.


As an experienced teacher, Jane started off her demonstrations with a brief introduction to the geography, culture and food of Italy. We can see that she is a good teacher.


Jane prepared the above two dough from all purpose flour and whole wheat fine ground flour early in the morning using a bread machine. Jane will demonstrate to us how to prepare the dough by hand from scratch later in the kitchen.


One important tool to make fresh pasta is a sturdy pasta machine. The above pasta machine has 3 slots, one for rolling the dough into thin sheet with adjustable thickness, another for cutting the dough sheet into wide flat noodle like fettuccine and a last slot for cutting the dough sheet into thin noodle like angel hair.


  • Flour (usually white all purpose, but you may use whole wheat fine ground hard wheat)
  • Eggs – roughly 1 egg per one cup of flour; quantity varies according to the type and humidity of the flour and the size of the eggs.
  • For our demonstration, Jane used 2 cups all purpose flour and 3 eggs and 1/4 teaspoon (1 ml) salt.

Click on Read More for the instructions.


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Fettuccine with Roasted Pepper and Sun Dried Tomato Sauce

For the main course, Minoo and Mona made Fettuccine with Roasted Pepper and Sun Dried Tomato Sauce in the South Arm Cooking Club for seniors. This is kind of a vegetarian pasta dish.


Although the sauce for this Fettuccine has no meat in it, it is still very flavourful and satisfying.


  • 4 large red bell peppers
  • 1 large onion, roughly chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes (dry or oil pack)
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 1 lb fettuccine pasta
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 3/4 cip half & half
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste


Click on Read More for the instructions.


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