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Tomato, Fennel, and Goat Cheese Pasta

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    Fennel adds a lovely earthy flavour to this dish. It is also a good source of calcium, potassium, and vitamin C.

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    3 Tbsp (45 mL) extra-virgin olive oil
    1 onion, diced
    2 garlic cloves, minced
    10 anchovy filets, chopped
    1/2 tsp (2 mL) crushed red pepper flakes
    1 large fennel bulb, trimmed and chopped into 1/2 in (1 cm) pieces, fronds reserved
    1/2 lb (225 g) whole grain farfalle pasta
    2 cups (500 mL) cherry tomatoes, cut in halves
    2 tsp (10 mL) dried marjoram
    1 Tbsp (15 mL) fresh basil, chopped
    6 cups (1.5 L) baby spinach
    Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
    1/4 cup (60 mL) soft goat cheese
    3 Tbsp (45 mL) toasted pine nuts

    Heat oil over medium-high heat in large skillet. Add onion, garlic, anchovies, red pepper flakes, and fennel. Sauté until vegetables are tender and starting to brown, about 10 minutes.

    Meanwhile, cook pasta in large pot of boiling salted water according to package directions. Drain, reserving about 1 cup (250 mL) pasta water.

    Add tomatoes, marjoram, and basil to veggie mixture and continue to sauté until tomatoes slightly break down, creating a thin sauce. Stir in spinach, pasta, and a few tablespoons of reserved pasta water until spinach is wilted and pasta is warmed through. Add more water as needed to create a saucy consistency, and season to taste with black pepper.

    Divide among serving dishes, and garnish with crumbled goat cheese, pine nuts, and reserved
    fennel fronds.

    Serves 4.

    Each serving contains:  486 calories; 18 g protein; 21 g total fat (4 g sat. fat, 0 g trans fat); 59 g carbohydrates; 11 g fibre; 490 mg sodium

    source: "Pasta, Pronto!", alive #353, March 2012

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    Tomato, Fennel, and Goat Cheese Pasta

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