Sunday, January 19, 2014

Zucca Mostaccioli

Pasta with Butternut squash & Tomatoes

We talked about the benefits of tomatoes and the Lycopene they contain.
Did you know that tomatoes are considered a fruit? Well so is butternut squash technically because it contains seeds. (In Australia, it is refereed to as a pumpkin) In South Africa it is mostly used as a soup.
It is rich in antioxidants: low in fat and plenty of dietary fiber, making it an exceptionally heart-friendly choice. It provides large amounts of potassium, and vitamin B6, for both the nervous and immune systems.
Just as red showed the presence of lycopene in tomatoes, squash's tangerine hue signals an abundance of carotenoids, shown to protect against heart disease. In particular, they have very high levels of beta-carotene, identified as a deterrent against breast cancer and age-related macular degeneration. What's more, with only a 1-cup serving, you get nearly half the recommended daily dose of antioxidant-rich vitamin C.
Now since we all have made various resolutions about getting healthy or losing weight, having a few meatless dishes a week will help us feel better too! 
Please Note: If you want your family to join you, may slave suggest you fix this as a meal for yourself and a side dish for them along with a grilled chicken breast or hamburger. It will be much easier for them to try and like it if they don't feel forced into it.
Also slave does not believe in trying to make meatless dishes taste like they have meat in them, that is a sure road to disappointment! Instead have them taste different, great but different. Slave just feels like it is more honest that way.

Zucca Mostaccioli

Pasta with Butternut squash & Tomatoes



  • 2 cans of diced tomatoes (14.5 oz. each)
  • 1 ½ to 2 pounds peeled, cubed butternut squash, (about 5 cups)
  • ¼ cup sliced shallots
  • ¼ cup chopped onions
  • 3 cloves garlic chopped
  • ¼ cup of balsamic vinegar
  • Non-fat plain Greek style yogurt
  • 8 ounces mostaccioli pasta cooked
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 small jar shitiki mushrooms, drained or regular if that's all you have
  • Freshly chopped parsley or Parmesan, for garnish


Bring a large pot of water to a boil and salt it., then cook the pasta according to pkg directions.
Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Cut skin off of squash, scoop out the seeds, (they can be roasted also and eaten as a snack)

Dice the squash into 1 to 1 ½ inch cubes and toss with 1 tbs of oil to very lightly coat. Arrange on baking tray and roast for 12 minutes, then remove and turn the pieces over for another 15 minutes or until they start to get slightly brown on the edges.

After returning the squash to the oven, put 1 tbs oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the chopped shallots and garlic, cook for about 3-4 minutes; add the drained tomatoes, vinegar, and mushrooms. Cook for about 15 minutes or so, stirring frequently so as not to burn.
Remove from skillet into a large bowl with the squash and add yogurt last. Mash with a potato masher to get the right consistency.

Serve over the hot cooked pasta. Garnish with parsley or grated Parmesan.

This sauce can be doubled and frozen so that you can have a great tasting meal in just a few minutes. Please make fresh pasta each time! Just because you don't have much time to cook is NO excuse to gobble down fattening foods.
Yes, that would be easier, but it would NOT be serving those you love, would it?

Hope you enjoy.
Proudly serving my Master Indy


To satisfy and restore.
To nourish, support and maintain.
To gratify, spoil, comfort and please,
to nurture, assist, and sustain
..I cook!

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