Garden Picked Pasta

My son and his wife came over to play cards today. We have a year long tournament going on right now. Its my son and I vs the Hubs and our daughter-in-love, who, by the way, is expecting our ninth grandchild in January!!!!

They decided to stay for dinner and I hadn’t planned anything so……. time to raid the garden, pantry, and fridge.

I love, love, love summer when I can go out my backdoor and pick my dinner from the garden! We picked zucchini, orange grape tomatoes, pattypan squash, and fresh basil.

I found a pound of Italian sausage in the freezer and a pound of Delallo Whole Wheat Pasta in the pantry. I always have the Delallo Whole Wheat Pasta on hand. It is the absolute best whole grain pasta that I have found. It always cooks up beautifully and has a bit of a sweet nutty taste to it.

This jar of Bella Sun Luci Italiano Dip was also just hanging out in my pantry. I picked it up at Sam’s Club a while back and I was waiting to try it. Today was the day! It can be used many different ways. On top of cream cheese or goat cheese, dip for chips, on chicken, or as I used it- stirred into a pasta dish.

The flavors in this recipe really came together nicely and it was oh so fresh!

Garden Picked Pasta

Serves: 4


1 lb Delallo Whole Wheat Pasta (any shape you desire)

1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

1 medium brown onion

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 medium zucchini, chopped into one-inch cubes

2 medium pattypan squash, chopped into one-inch cubes

1 lb bulk mild Italian sausage

1 handful of grape tomatoes, whole

1/4 cup Bella Sun Luci Italiano Dip

1 bunch of fresh basil, cut into strips

Parmesean cheese for garnish

Cook pasta according to package directions.

While pasta is cooking, brown Italian sausage in frying pan until crumbly. Drain grease and add the grape tomatoes and turn off heat. The tomatoes will soften up just sitting in the warm sausage.

In a separate pan sauté onions and garlic in olive oil until onions are translucent.

Stir in squash and sauté until tender. Add a little chicken broth or water if needed to get squash to a crisp tender level.

Drain pasta, reserving about 1/2 cup of the water to use if needed to loosen sauce.

Place the pasta back in the pan it was cooked in. Stir in the Bella Sun Luci Italiano Dip. Add cooked veggies, the sausage and tomatoes and stir gently. Add a bit of the reserved pasta water if you need to loosen it up a bit.

Pour into large bowl and garnish with basil and parmesan.





Lemony Asparagus, Orzo and Ham Salad

Still have leftover ham from Easter! And leftover uncooked asparagus as well. Fridge is bulging.

Good thing the Hubs has his weekly card game tonight because it is time to use this stuff up. This salad is what I came up with.

This salad looks super fresh and pretty. Beautiful colors in it. Look at those lovely little bits of red pepper peeking out! The lemon vinaigrette that I found online gives it a nice zingy taste.

You really could add anything you like to this salad, making it the perfect “clean out the fridge” salad. I’m thinking broccoli and chicken, asparagus and salmon, make it vegetarian by leaving out the meat. Whatever your little heart desires!

I like to use DeLallo whole wheat pasta in cold salads because it has a little nutty flavor and it stands up to sitting in the dressing. It keeps that nice little bite. But, you could use any pasta you choose.

The toasted pine nuts add a nice little crunch and the avocado finishes it off perfectly. Yum yum!

Hope you enjoy this salad. It really is a “no-brainer!”

Lemony Asparagus, Orzo and Ham Salad

1 1/2 c  DeLallo whole wheat orzo

1/4 c finely chopped red onion

1/2 c medium chopped red pepper

1 rib celery finely chopped

1 lb asparagus, woody part removed, chopped into 1 in. pieces

1 c chopped ham

This dressing. Use the entire amount made. (The only thing that I changed on the dressing recipe is that I just dumped all of the ingredients in a mason jar and gave it a good shaking. So easy!)

One avocado cubed

1/3 c toasted pine nuts

Lemon zest for garnish if desired.


Bring 3 quarts lightly salted water to a boil. Add orzo and bring back to a boil. Cook orzo for 8 min then add chopped asparagus and cook two more minutes.

Remove from heat and drain.

Mix orzo and asparagus mixture in large bowl with all other ingredients except for the avocado. Let chill in fridge for at least 4 hours. Gently stir in avocado  and pine nuts just before serving. Garnish with lemon zest.

Easy Cheesy Sausage Pumpkin Pasta Bake


The hubs plays in a card game every Wednesday night with a group of friends. Everyone brings a snack. Not an assigned one, just what ever anyone feels like bringing. He tells me that there is always a great variety of food each week. So much for my hours of planning who will bring what to family holiday dinners! Maybe next holiday dinner I will tell everyone to bring whatever they want. Could be fun. Maybe. Maybe not so much.

What should he bring to cards this week? Our cupboards were pretty bare as I haven’t had time to do a “big” grocery shopping trip since getting back from our vacation.  Maybe I will do a Costco run today.

I did happen to have two of my most favorite ingredients in the pantry.

DeLallo Whole Wheat pasta and Cucina Antica Tuscany Pumpkin pasta sauce.

Now, I know what you are going to say. “Wait, pumpkin is a Fall ingredient.” Well, I am a rebel. So there.

DeLallo is my favorite brand of whole wheat pasta and the hubs loves these Orecchiette shape. I order it from Amazon because I can’t seem to find this shape in a store here.

I stumbled across the Cucina Antica Tuscany Pumpkin sauce on a trip to Sprouts last fall. Oh my goodness. So so good. It contains pumpkin puree, imported Italian San Marzano tomatoes, heavy cream, honey, carrot puree, butter, sea salt, basil, parsley, rosemary, cinnamon, and sage. It also has no preservatives and is gluten free. Bonus recipe for Tuscan Cream of Pumpkin soup on the label.  I went back to Sprouts to buy more and they were all out and didn’t anticipate receiving anymore soon. So, back to Amazon and I ordered 12 jars. Hence the abundance of this in my pantry.

I also had some mozzarella and some Italian sausage in the freezer. So, I threw it all together and came up with this. Turned out great. Desperation (and lack of energy to go shopping) is a great cultivator of creativity!

Easy Cheesy Sausage Pumpkin Pasta Bake

Serves: 8

Preheat oven to 350 degrees


16 oz. DeLallo Organic Whole Wheat Orecchiette (if you prefer a saucier dish use less pasta)

1 Jar Cucina Antica Tuscany Pumpkin pasta sauce

2 cups reduced fat mozzarella cheese, shredded (save a bit for topping)

1/2 lb. sweet Italian turkey sausage, browned and crumbled

1/4 c. grated Parmesan/Romano cheese

Salt and Pepper to taste

Prepare pasta according to directions. I undercooked it just a tad. Brown sausage until crumbly.

Spray a 9X13 pan with cooking spray. Add a little of the sauce and spread around. Layer pasta, sausage, mozzarella, more sauce ending with sauce. Sprinkle with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan/Romano.

Bake uncovered for approximately 35 minutes or until bubbly.

Serve immediately.

388 cal per serving

10 WW plus points