Pasta Puttansca, Simple yet Brilliant

Pasta Puttansca 

If you’re looking for a really tasty recipe for a busy weekday meal, this is it. The sauce is made up of ingredients you can keep in your pantry and can be pulled together in the time it takes to boil water and cook the pasta.  What’s really great about this recipe is that even though it’s quick to prepare it tastes special enough to serve to company.  The artichokes are not in the traditional recipe and you can omit them if you don’t have them on hand. However, I recommend you do add them as they make the dish really gourmet. (Trader Joes has frozen artichoke hearts that are a really good deal.) If you have time, make the sauce a couple of hours in advance so the flavors have a chance to merge. The longer it sits, the more flavorful it becomes.

3 cloves garlic, minced

28 oz can diced tomatoes, fired-roasted if available

¼ c red wine

1/8 – ¼ t red pepper flakes

1 t oregano

¼ c chopped fresh basil, divided (or 1 T dried if you can’t get fresh)

½ c kalamata olives, chopped

2 T capers

1 ½ c chopped defrosted frozen (or canned) artichoke hearts

Salt and pepper to taste

Toasted pine nuts

Vegan Parmesan cheez

Angel hair pasta, cooked according to package directions

Sauté garlic in a little water just until soft.  Add tomatoes, wine, red pepper, oregano and half of the fresh basil (or all of the dried basil, if that’s what you’re using).  Let simmer for about 7 – 10 minutes until it begins to thicken. Add olives, capers and chopped artichokes.  Simmer for an additional 5 minutes or more until flavors blend and sauce is reduced somewhat.  Adjust seasoning (you probably won’t need any salt since the olives and capers are so salty) and add the rest of the fresh basil.

Serve over hot pasta, garnished with Vegan Parmesan cheez and pine nuts.

World Cancer Day: How meat can be murder – Dr Neal Barnard

Warnings are now added to cigarettes, but what about meat consumption?

Today is World Cancer Day.

When you consider the efforts to fight cancer, the image that most readily springs to mind might be the graphic warning labels added to cigarette packets sold in the UK and other countries, which have helped curb smoking and its associated health risks. Similar warnings should be placed on meat and dairy products for the same reason. Unlike foods from plants that enhance our health, meat and dairy products have the same hazards as cigarette smoking, including increased risks of strokes, heart disease and cancer.

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