My kids love pasta so I’m always looking for new ways to cook their favourite food. They need to be quick too, what with work, after school clubs…. I don’t have time to faff about for ages in the kitchen preparing meals.
Pasta is a great way to fill up your family with the necessary carbohydrates providing the energy kids need to keep going! However, cook with rich, creamy sauces and the calories soon add up.
This healthy spin on a classic carbonara left them all wanting more in my house!
200g freshly podded or frozen peas
1 tablespoon flaked almonds
1 small clove of garlic
½ a bunch of fresh basil
15g Parmesan cheese
150g wholewheat spaghetti
1 rasher of smoked streaky bacon
1 large free-range egg
100g fat-free natural yoghurt
Put a pan of boiling salted water on the heat for your pasta, dunk a sieve containing the peas into the water for just 30 seconds, then put aside, leaving the pan on the heat. Very lightly toast the almonds in a dry non-stick frying pan on a medium heat, then blitz until fine in a food processor. With the processor still running, peel and drop in the garlic, a pinch of sea salt, the basil leaves, the finely grated Parmesan and the lemon juice. Blitz until it comes together, then pulse in the peas, to try and keep a bit of texture.
Cook the pasta in the boiling salted water according to the packet instructions. Meanwhile, very finely slice the bacon and fry slowly in the frying pan with 1 teaspoon of oil on a medium-low heat until golden and crispy, then use a slotted spoon to transfer to kitchen paper, so the flavoursome fat stays in the pan. Scoop in three-quarters of your pea mixture to heat through.
Whisk the egg and yoghurt together well. When the pasta’s done, reserving a mugful of cooking water, drain the pasta and toss straight into the pea pan, mixing well, then take the pan off the heat (this is very important, otherwise the egg will scramble when you add it, and we don’t want that). Pour in the egg mixture and toss until evenly coated, silky and creamy, loosening with cooking water if needed. Taste and season to perfection, and serve topped with the remaining pea mixture and the crispy bacon. It might be skinny, but it’s beautifully light and delicious
I didn’t do the blitz bit and just boshed all the ingredients in together to save time and washing up! Just as tasty. I have also made using broccoli instead of peas, chorizo instead of bacon and mint or rosemary instead of basil. All super tasty and super easy!
I’ve also used a variety of pasta shapes. It works with them all. There are so many to choose from now as shown in this Jamie’s Italian Infographic:
What’s your favourite?