Here is a fragrant garden delight that gives us all the taste and luscious texture of a thick cream sauce but with a fraction of the calories and fat. The real stars of the show are the ripe tomatoes and fresh red bell peppers that are making their colorful appearance in many farmerís markets now–and this is one great vehicle for them, quick to make and bursting with summer flavor and pleasure.
Find out the secret to a low-fat cream sauce with lycopene and antioxidant nutrition built right in, right here:
1 pound dry pasta (penne, mostaccioli, or gemelli work well)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium carrot, cut into thin coins
2 red bell peppers, cut into thin strips
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
4 cups diced tomatoes
1 teaspoon dried basil or 1 tablespoon minced fresh basil
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
4 teaspoons flour
1/2 cup evaporated skim milk
1. Cook pasta in boiling water according to package directions until al dente.
2. While pasta is cooking, warm the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Gently saute the carrot, peppers, onion, and garlic about 10 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, basil (if using dried), and seasonings; cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
3. Combine flour and milk, and stir well. Slowly add milk mixture to the sauce, stirring constantly, until slightly thickened. Add fresh basil.
4. Drain pasta well and add to skillet. Toss gently and serve.
Adapted from The Co-Op Cookbook, by Rosemary Fifield (Chelsea Green, 2000). Copyright (c) 2000 by Rosemary Fifield. Reprinted by permission of Chelsea Green.
Adapted from The Co-Op Cookbook, by Rosemary Fifield (Chelsea Green, 2000).