Pasta in 1-2-3

I like a challenge. I really do. I appreciate hard work, fortitude, perseverance.  But there are things in life that I believe shouldn't be a challenge in order for us to feel fulfilled. Friendships, boyfriends, food – all of these things should be the easy pieces of life - the things that bring us joy and not drama. Life brings on plenty of theatrics in and of itself without the difficulties of these outside forces, and I truly believe you can choose to have an easy and simple life by removing the entities that overwhelm you. And yes, I said food in there. Food is something I cherish dearly, but food is sometimes a stress inducing friend that I just don’t want around.  During busy weeks, such as these,  every minute with my little family seems ever so precious and sometimes I do not want to spend my time paying all of my attention on food. I want to embrace moments of togetherness and not be tucked away steaming broccoli and boiling brown rice.  Frankly, I don’t need the drama of a crazy pants recipe in my kitchen after working a long day. On a calm day, it can be very relaxing to cook away the day, but nights lately are such a flurry that I like to have a simple, stress-free dinner.

And so I bring to you my recipe-less pasta recipe. My favorite little dish that I make when things are just too much and I need an easy way out.  I don’t measure anything. I just flavor away until my tastebuds are happy. I’m not going to provide much direction on this one – just a recommendation of my favorite spices and additives so you can make a healthy, tasty, EASY dish tonight and enjoy some family time together.

ingredients

Ingredients (all of which are flavored to your liking):

Pasta (I prefer the Quinoa Pasta - doesn't feel quite as heavy) Olive oil Parmesan Cheese (grated) Fresh Basil Cherry Tomatoes (quartered) Red Pepper Flakes Italian Seasoning Salt Freshly ground pepper Water for boiling Optional: veggie patties, chicken, sausage, more veggies! (Whatever moves you)ew

 

Directions:

Bring your water to a boil. Throw in the pasta.  For the quinoa pasta, I boil this on high for about 6-7 minutes. Once pasta is tender, strain and throw it back into the pot. Add olive oil so that your pasta doesn't stick together and start flavoring to your liking. As I add in my spices, I tend to pour more olive oil as I go, as the spices and cheese seep it up. My routine usually goes something like this: 10 shakes of red pepper flakes, 8 rounds of pepper grinding, 4 grinds on the salt, sprinkle Italian seasoning, throw in some parmesan, that doesn't look like enough tomatoes - more please! Basil party! More parm! Aaaand repeat the madness as needed.

 

pasta

 

And here's part of the reason why I want an easy-peasy kitchen life this week:

photo

We just adopted this little man and who wouldn't want to hang out with that face? We are still searching for his name - so suggestions are welcome. For now, he is Mac - the new Benner Fit cat!