JANUARY 13, 1997

 The Edwards Agency

Home & Garden

Dining In: Popular pasta dishes

recipes    Pasta can give you a head start on healthful meals. Depending on the sauce or ingredients you add, it's low in fat. And, unless it was made with whole eggs, it contains no cholesterol. High in complex carbohydrates, pasta also provides vitamins and minerals.
   Following is a glossary of pasta terms that represent just a fraction of the many varieties of pasta available:
   Cannelloni--large pasta tubes that are boiled, then stuffed with a meat or cheese filling and baked with a sauce.
   Fettuccine--long, narrow strips of flat noodles.
   Mostaccioli--large, 2-inch long tubes cut diagonally.
   Ravioli--square, stuffed pasta served with sauce or soup.
   Spaghetti--long, thin strands of pasta.
   Tortellini--a small, filled ring-shaped dumpling.
   Vermicelli--very fine strands of pasta.

Marco Polo's Linguine & Clams
   1 lb. uncooked linguine
   2 cans (6.5 oz. each) minced clams
   1 Tbsp. vegetable oil
   1 bunch green onions and tops, chopped
   3 large cloves garlic, minced
   3 Tbsp. soy sauce
   1 Tbsp. dry sherry
   3 Tbsp. minced cilantro

   Cook linguine according to package directions, omitting salt; drain. Meanwhile, reserving liquid, drain clams. Add enough water to reserved clam liquid to measure 1 2/3 cups; set aside. Heat oil in hot skillet over medium heat. Add green onions and garlic; saute 2 minutes. Stir in clam liquid mixture, soy sauce and sherry; bring to boil. Cover and simmer 5 minutes. Stir in clams and cilantro; heat through. Serve clams and sauce over linguine.

Classic Macaroni & Cheese
   1 1/2 c. elbow macaroni
   3 Tbsp. butter
   2 Tbsp. flour
   1/2 tsp. salt
   Dash pepper
   2 c. milk
   8 oz. sharp cheddar cheese cut into 1-inch cubes

   Heat oven to 350 F. Cook macaroni in boiling water until tender; drain and reserve. In 1-qt. heavy saucepan, melt butter over low heat. Stir in flour, salt, and pepper; whisk until smooth. Add milk; cook, stirring constantly. Let boil 1 minute; stir in cheese. Cook, stirring constantly until cheese is melted. Stir cheese sauce into macaroni. Place in 1 1/2 qt. casserole dish. Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until heated through.

Gemelli with Vegetable Sauce and Ham
   12 oz. gemelli pasta
   3 Tbsp. olive oil
   3 Tbsp. finely chopped onion
   3 Tbsp. diced carrots
   3.5 oz. julienned ham
   2 Tbsp. white wine
   1/2 c. frozen peas, thawed
   2 3/8 c. peeled, seeded, chopped fresh tomato or well-drained canned tomatoes
   1 tsp. finely chopped parsley
   Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
   2 Tbsp. Parmesan cheese, grated

   Cook pasta according to package directions.
   In a 2-qt. saucepan or deep-sided skillet over medium-high heat, saute the onion and carrot in the olive oil until golden. Add ham and saute 1 minute; then stir in the wine and let the alcohol evaporate for a few seconds.
   Add peas, tomatoes, and parsley, and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes over medium heat. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add sauce to 12 oz. cooked, gemelli pasta. Sprinkle cheese on top.

Creamy Shrimp and Snow Pea Pods atop Angel Hair Pasta
   4 c. water
   1 Tbsp. vegetable oil
   1/4 tsp. salt
   4 oz. uncooked angel hair pasta
   2 Tbsp. margarine
   3 Tbsp. flour
   1 tsp. chicken flavor instant bouillon
   1 1/3 c. skim milk
   1/2 c. shredded Parmesan cheese (from dairy section), divided
   1 pkg. (6 oz.) frozen snow pea pods, cooked and drained
   1/3 c. sliced water chestnuts
   8 oz. peeled and cooked shrimp

   In large glass mixing bowl, microwave water, oil, and salt on high until boiling, about 10 minutes. Add pasta and microwave on high for 3 to 4 minutes or until tender. Drain and rinse with hot water. Cover and keep and warm.
   Using same mixing bowl, heat margarine on high for 30 seconds or until melted. Stir in flour and bouillon. Gradually stir in milk, using wire whisk. Microwave on high for 4 minutes or until thickened, stirring once halfway through cooking. Stir in 1/4 c. of the cheese and all remaining ingredients. Microwave on high for 2 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Spoon over warm pasta. Sprinkle with remaining cheese.

Italian Pasta with Greens
(from the American Heart Association)
   6 c. water
   2 c. bow-tie or medium shell pasta
   1/2 tsp. bottled minced garlic
   1 tsp. olive oil
   1 to 2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
   2 c. torn fresh spinach
   1 c. torn radicchio
   1/4 c. shredded or grated Parmesan cheese

   In a large saucepan, bring water to a boil over high heat. Add pasta. Reduce heat slightly and boil gently, uncovered, about 8 minutes or until pasta is al dente. Drain.
   Meanwhile, in a small skillet, cook garlic in oil over medium heat until tender, about 1 minute. Stir in vinegar. Place spinach and radicchio in a large bowl. Add hot pasta. Pour hot garlic mixture over and toss to mix well. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

Noodles & Chicken
   6 oz. angel-hair pasta, uncooked
   2 c. vegetable oil
   1/2 lb. boneless chicken breast, cut in small chunks
   1 Tbsp. olive oil
   1 tsp. chili pepper
   1 clove garlic, minced
   1 packet chicken bouillon mixed with 2 c. water

   In large skillet, fry uncooked pasta in hot vegetable oil until golden brown. Drain pasta and set aside, reserving oil for future use. Preheat oven to 400 F. In a flame-proof, oven-proof casserole, lightly saute chicken in olive oil. Add chili pepper and garlic and saute until garlic is golden.
   Add fried pasta to chicken mixture; add enough prepared bouillon to just cover the pasta. Bring to a boil and boil 3-4 minutes. Place on the bottom rack of pre-heated oven and bake, uncovered, until the liquid evaporates and noodles are soft (approx. 6-7 minutes). Garnish with chopped parsley.