Rejoice in comfort food again and feel good about it! I don’t think I have ever met anyone who totally dislikes pasta, but I have met many people that feel guilty after eating pasta. Carbohydrates got a bad reputation in the 1970- 1980’s as being the main culprit for weight gain. This followed with a variety of diet programs of high protein and no carb trends which promise quick weight-loss. Let’s clarify some of these weight myths.
We gain fat by simply consuming more energy (aka calories) than we use and then store it as fat. Excessive fats are stored in the liver and within the fat tissue in our body. Proteins are broken down into amino acids to build tissues in our body, however, an excess can also be converted to carbohydrates and fat in the body and also can be stored as fat. As for carbohydrates? Well, carbohydrates are turned into sugars (glycogen) which are our body’s preferred source of fuel. However, if we consume too many carbohydrates or sugar our body converts it to fat and stores it in our apidose (fat) tissues.
So you can see that an excess of anything (carbs, fats, proteins, sugars) can all be converted and stored as fat. Therefore, labeling carbohydrates as “bad” foods in not necessarily accurate. Quality and quantity of the foods you eat are critical for health and wellness. This pasta recipe uses whole grains, an array of colorful vegetables, and a modest amount of fats that in the serving size provided you can enjoy without the intense after guilt. We want to love the food we eat, have it love us back, and develop a positive relationship with the foods we eat again.
Roasted Brussel Spouts & Tomato Pasta
- 1 lbs brussel sprouts, washed, trimmed, cut in half
- 3 tbsp avocado oil
- 1 tbsp sea salt
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes
- 125 grams pancetta or vegan coconut bacon (I like sailin on brand)
- 2 medium shallots, peeled, chopped
- 500 grams pasta, I like semolina or quinoa pasta
- 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese or nutritional yeast
- freshly ground pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, loosely chopped
- preheat oven to 400 degrees, line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Toss trimmed and cut Brussel sprouts into 1 tbsp of avocado oil and a pinch of 1/4 tsp of sea salt in a bowl. Lay on the tray, leaving 1/4 of the tray free for the tomatoes. Bake for 35 minutes.
- Meanwhile toss the tomatoes in 1 tbsp of oil and 1/4 tsp of sea salt. Once the 35 minutes is up, add the tomatoes to the tray and bake for an additional 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile boil your water and cook pasta according to instructions. Place shallot and pancetta in the pan and cook on low-medium for 5-7 minutes. If you using the vegan bacon, just cook the shallot.
- Drain pasta and place in a large bowl. Add shallots, bacon and the juices in the pan to the pasta and stir. next add the brussel sprouts and tomatoes. Pour remainig 1 tbsp of oil, basil, salt and peper to the pasta and toss.
- Serve into bowl and sprinkle with parmson cheese or nutritional yeast.