How Chickapea Baked Pasta Saved My Butt. Literally.
It’s Not Just About Baked Pasta
First and foremost, this is not a tale solely about the luxurious ease of quick-cooking and healthy baked pasta. While I am falling in love with Chickapea pasta and it’s 2-ingredient awesomeness of only organic chickpeas and lentils (seriously, that’s all), there was another love that came first. A love that may be too often overlooked as the demands and frustrations of parenting appeared and pulled my attentions from him. The husband, bless his hockey-loving soul, is always sharing me with our newest family member. For the last three years we have been deeply immersed in the thick of parenthood. There have been many ups, and there have certainly been downs. Last week we hit a down.
Or, rather, I fell down and hit my tailbone. Really hard. Since then, beyond the sore butt, I’ve had headaches and nausea when I am too busy and aggravate my injury. (Now, thinking back, I probably was suffering a passing illness at the time, too, though it’s hard to discern where my symptoms were really coming from. In any case, it’s much better now.) The first day back after last weekend’s road trip was especially aggravating.
So here I am, lying on the couch, finally hitting the part in the day where I know I need to stop moving and try to let my body recover. (I may never learn this.) There is no way I was going to be getting up to make dinner, but I had gone shopping and picked up some pasta sauce to toss together a baked pasta dish with some of that Chickapea pasta I was mentioning. Breaking from my whimpering away in child’s pose, I let Dear Old Hubby G in on the plan I had for dinner. I’ve been trying really hard to better nourish my family, and make sure we all have a healthy family dinner these past few weeks. It’s not my strong suit, but I’ve realized it’s importance for our family, so I want to give it my best shot.
Taking charge and filling in where I could not, G easily tossed together a delicious meal, without needing any instruction from me. (Not that my instructions would have been very helpful. Ridiculously enough, I had looked up a recipe for baked pasta on the Chickapea website, even though it’s pretty well the most simple dish one can make. I always second guess myself.) For those of you, like me, who are not especially confident in the kitchen, here is a simple recipe and directions for making baked pasta.
Chickapea Baked Pasta: An Easy Weeknight Meal
1 jar pasta sauce – I chose Newman’s Own All Natural Fire Roasted Tomato & Garlic sauce. First off, it was on sale. I’m always down with a good sale. Second, all the ingredients are recognizable and natural. I also recently found out that all profits go to charity, too, so that’s pretty cool.
1 227g package of Chickapea pasta – Z helped to choose which pasta to use, and opted for the shells. The spirals or penne also would have worked. G likes to boil pasta before baking it, but it can also get tossed together dry, without boiling, and will cook fine with the pasta sauce.
Chopped veggies – Whatever you have in your fridge will work. We had broccoli, carrots, peppers and onions, so that’s what got tossed in.
Grated cheese – Cheddar, mozza, whatever you like, really.
Generally, the cheese is supposed to be grated on top after the sauce and veggies are mixed together, but someone took a page out of my book and forgot to mix in the sauce before he topped the dish. Therefore, the cheese was mixed all throughout, with an extra helping on top. I certainly did not complain, since it was delicious.
Once you’ve assembled it all in a casserole or other baking dish, pop it into the preheated oven at 400°. 30 minutes in worked well for our dish, but if you were baking un-boiled pasta, you may need 50 minutes in the oven.
So, what am I trying to say?
In perfect timing for our Canadian Thanksgiving, I want to give thanks. I am incredibly thankful for a partner who may not always agree with me, but who is always there to do what is needed when I need it most. I’m thankful for sharing my life with someone who helps to balance out the many responsibilities, frustrations, and to-dos of adult life.
I’m also thankful that we are living in a time when convenience is starting to recognize that, yes, we need options for making food quickly and easily, but without compromising health and nutrition. I’m thankful for food that not only tastes good, but makes me feel good about what I’m putting in my and my family’s bodies. Food that doesn’t require special knowledge, careful recipes, and hours of prep time to get the job done.
Now, It’s Giveaway Time!
I’m thrilled to be able to spread the news about Chickapea pasta as an ambassador, and am excited to let you know about the giveaway I’m hosting. One lucky reader from each blog will receive a gift basket full of goodies, valued around $75. The contents of the gift basket are as follows:
1 box of Chickapea Spirals
1 box of Chickapea Penne
1 box of Chickapea Shells
1 bottle of Kiki Maple Sweet Water
1 container of Teatulia Chamomile Tea (30 bags)
1 bag (142g) of Neal Brothers Montreal Steak Spice Kettle Chips
1 jar of Neal Brothers Organic Roasted Garlic Pasta Sauce
1 package (225g) of Budding Nutrition Gut Busters
1 package of (84g) Rawnata Vanilla Saskatoon Flax Crackers
All of the above items were kindly donated by Neal Brothers, Avid Gourmet and LCG Foods.
To enter, use the Rafflecopter form below. This giveaway starts October 11th at midnight, and closes at midnight on October 31st, 2016. It is only open to Canadians, and while there are multiple gift baskets like this being given out by other Chickapea ambassadors this month, each winner can only win one basket. Further rules and regulations listed on the Rafflecopter.
Thank you for reading and good luck with the giveaway! To receive a little token of my appreciation each week, and be sure you’re in the know about future posts and giveaways worth seeing, pop your name on the list here. I’d also love to connect on social media. Find me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest. Make sure to say hi!
Disclosure: I am an ambassador for Chickapea Pasta. While this post has been sponsored, the above information, experiences, and opinions remain true and solely my own. As always, I only share about what I can stand behind, so rest assured if it’s up here, I believe it’s worth your while to check out. You can view my full disclosure statement here.