What is pasta made of?
Pasta is actually a carbohydrate. It is made of durum wheat flour (mostly durum), water and sometimes eggs. A cup of pasta after cooking has about 160 calories, about 30 grams of carbohydrates, about 6 grams of protein, about 2 grams of dietary fiber and a little fat and sodium. Pasta can be included in the daily menu, as part of a balanced diet and without fear of weight gain. This is as long as an adequate amount is observed (half a cup – a cup per meal) in combination with a sauce that is not high in calories, alongside a portion of meat/meat substitute and vegetables.
Regular pasta or whole wheat?
Nowadays you can also get whole wheat pasta or spelled flour. And here’s a fact that may rock your world: there is no caloric difference between the above-mentioned pastas and ordinary wheat pastas. But, and this is a big but: they are richer in vitamins and dietary fiber, which contribute to a feeling of satiety and proper digestion and are therefore preferable.
For those avoiding gluten, there is a selection of gluten-free pastas. These pastas are made from rice flour, corn flour or legume flours such as beans or peas. The pastas made from legumes contain a greater amount of protein, vitamins and dietary fiber.
What about the sauce?
The most familiar combination of pasta sauce is tomato sauce. Tomatoes are an important source of the antioxidant lycopene which gives the red color to vegetables and fruits. Its strong antioxidant property may contribute to the prevention of many diseases and even to the protection of the skin from the damage of solar radiation. The advantage of lycopene comes from the fact that it is not destroyed during the processing of the tomatoes, as is customary in the creation of tomato paste or for the preparation of various tomato sauces. In fact, cooking the tomatoes even makes the lycopene more available for absorption. Therefore, a dish of quality spaghetti with tomato sauce is actually a nutritious dish that contributes to our health.
Pasta in rosé sauce
Ingredients (for 6 servings):
- A cup of uncooked pasta of the small clam type (or 140 grams before cooking of any other type).
- 250 ml 10% cooking cream (or 2 containers of 5% vegetable cooking cream for a fur or vegan recipe).
- A box of crushed tomatoes (260 g) or 3 medium fresh tomatoes, finely grated.
- Spices: crushed garlic clove, salt, white pepper.
- 4-3 basil leaves (optional).
Pour the crushed tomatoes into the pot and add the crushed garlic clove. Mix and bring to a boil.
Add the cream, while stirring, and cook for another five minutes, until the sauce is bubbling. Season and cook for another 5 minutes.
Cook the pasta according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
Transfer the pasta to the sauce and mix.
Sprinkle with basil leaves and serve.
*Can be served with parmesan cheese. A flat tablespoon of grated parmesan cheese is equal to half a serving of cheese protein.
Each portion is equal to a portion of carbohydrate and a portion of fat.The author is Efrat Ben Shatz Forshian, a clinical dietician, R.D, B.Sc. Courtesy of Hali Maman, founder of a chain specializing in a healthy lifestyle.