Recently, a friend of E’s, a budding Broadway star at the ripe old age of 23, asked me if I would boil up some of his college pal’s Mom’s “cool” pasta and consider sharing my thoughts with my readers.
Sure! But I have lists growing outa of the ears of my lists about places to eat, people to call, products to check out. So it’s been a little while since I first read the label on MagNoodles Smart Pasta and marveled.
This pasta is packed with whole grains including the little known, high protein, kamut and spelt. The grains are blended with carrots, beets, spinach or tomatoes, boosting their nutritional value and adding a touch of natural sweetness and color. And it cooks up just like white pasta.
That’s right, no weird gumminess or heft in this noodle.
High fiber is not the sexiest attribute but consider that there are 35 grams of whole grains per serving (daily recommended amount is 48g). I can promise that the texture is smooth and pleasing.
Whole grain pasta that doesn’t taste like cardboard? You’ll have to trust me on this one, folks.
Aileen Magnotto launched MagNoodles Smart Pasta in 1999 after years of sneaking veggies into her homemade pasta dough for her own kids. “The kids loved the smooth, hearty, whole grain texture.”
One day, her daughter’s friend got all jumbled up when asking Mrs. Magnotto for her noodles and instead asked for MagNoodles.
Unlike the pasta, it stuck.
Magnotto began to market and distribute MagNoodles through her family’s grocery store in Western PA. Boxes were flying off the shelves. Even Italian family members were substituting their favorite brands for this remarkably tasty, nutritionally dense pasta. She moved production to BF Foods, a family run, dry pasta producer in Chicago, where she committed to getting her organic, kosher and GMO free certification.
Very high standards, all three.
As a recent breast cancer survivor, Magnotto believes in the connection between proper nutrition and preventative medicine, loaded with grains and tons of veggies.
And Magnotto puts action to her words, spreading the gospel of good nutrition by traveling and donating to those who need it most. Recently she donated 23,000 servings of multi grain pasta to families in need at the Capital Area Food Bank in D.C.
MagNoodles is now sold in 110 stores including select Whole Foods in the mid-Atlantic states. For friends in the NorthEast, you’ll have to buy on-line at www.abesmarket.com. Remember to ask your local grocer (including Whole Foods) to consider carrying this pasta if you love it as much as I do.
Just in time for Memorial Day and the many picnics you will pack during our favorite season, here’s an easy recipe for pasta salad. Consider it a suggestion and feel free to substitute whatever you pick up at your farmers’ market and toss it about in your favorite dressing.
Aileen Magnotto kindly shared this recipe with me. I consider it a suggestion. Toss in your fave veggies and herbs, season as you like and enjoy this wonderful MagNoodles product.
- 1 10 oz. box Pennette or shells
- 1 red, yellow, and orange bell pepper
- 1/2 pint cherry tomatoes, cut in half
- 8 oz. fresh mozzarella cheese (the little pearl size works well)
- Fresh basil
- Chopped parsley or cilantro
- 1/4 cup Olive Oil
- 3-5 tablespoons balsamic vinegar (I used rice vinegar)
- Cook MagNoodles as directed. After draining, rinse in cold water and toss with 1 tablespoon oilive oil to keep from sticking.
- Chop the colored peppers finely.Chop 5-7 large leaves of fresh basil, reserve some leaves for garnish.
- Toss all of the ingredients; salt and pepper to taste, and serve.