The past few days have been filled with some pretty judgmental statements followed by uncomfortable feelings. I find it very hard to be criticized, but especially hard when the criticism is accompanied by slander and is intentionally hurtful. I believe there to be a polite, understanding way to say almost anything. Apparently, others don’t share in this belief.
In light of all this, I must repeat how very thankful I am to have such supportive people in my life. Even when strangers may cast undeserving stones, those close to me will stand by my side to help in any way they can.
I’ll admit during times of stress, food can do wonders for my mood. A beautifully, rich pasta dish might be just what you need after a long day. Or perhaps the weather really has you done and a simple indulgence like a chocolate tart will lighten your mood. I say indulge. Return to your day-to-day eating regime the following day and live your best life.
Our lives are best lived in a balanced state. Of course, finding the balance is the first half of the battle, and maintaining it is the last. A continuous effort that is well worth it when at the end of the day you are able to smile at the person you are.
Pasta with Mushrooms and Arugula
Adapted from Whole Foods.
This pasta dish is a savior at the end of the day. It’s simple, fragrant and flavorful. The combination of sage and cremini mushrooms is magical. And yes, this was part of my weekly ‘meal plan’.
2 T olive oil
1/2 pound cremini mushrooms, stems removed, rinsed and sliced
1 1/2 cup chicken (or vegetable) stock
1/4 c. vermouth (or dry white wine)
2 large garlic cloves, chopped
2 T balsamic vinegar
1 tsp crushed sage
1 (15-ounce) can no-salt-added white beans (1 1/2 cups), drained and rinsed
12 ounces whole wheat pasta
1 bunch arugula, washed and tough stems removed (about 4 tightly packed cups)
1/2 c organic bread crumbs
1 T olive oil
2 T chopped walnuts
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Meanwhile, heat a large high-sided skillet over high heat. Add olive oil, sage, and garlic. Then, add mushrooms and cook until mushrooms begin to soften, shrink and release their liquid, about 5 minutes. Add 1/2 cup broth and 1/4 c. vermouth to the pan, scraping the brown bits up off the bottom as the liquid sizzles. Take care to avoid the hot steam that rises when the liquid hits the pan. Reduce the liquid by about half, stirring often for 2 minutes. Add vinegar,remaining broth and beans. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium and simmer for 5
Cook pasta. Drain and add to the rest of ingredients. Stir arugula into the hot pasta just until the greens wilt slightly.
heat 1 T oil over medium heat. Add bread crumbs and stir constantly until crumbs are brown and crispy. Remove. Add walnuts and toss until fragrant. Top servings of pasta with these toppings plus a bit of Parmesan cheese.