Pasta pronto isn't always fattening

April 07, 1996|By Charlotte Balcomb Lane | Charlotte Balcomb Lane,KNIGHT-RIDDER NEWS SERVICE

With a box of pasta, a few vegetables, a can of tomatoes and a tiny amount of chicken, you can whip up a dinner that has far less fat than most commercial pasta preparations. And, as fast as it is to prepare, speedy tortellini doesn't taste like fast food.

Speedy tortellini

Makes 5 servings

1 (8-ounce) package dried small spinach tortellini filled with cheese

2 teaspoons olive oil

2 cups sliced fresh mushrooms

2 green onions, chopped

2 cloves garlic, crushed through a press or 1/2 teaspoon garlic puree

1/4 cup diced green bell pepper

1/4 cup diced yellow or red bell pepper

1 (14.5 ounce) can diced, peeled tomatoes

3 chicken tenders or 1 small chicken breast, diced ( 1/2 cup meat)

2 teaspoons dried basil leaves

1 teaspoon sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

Bring a large kettle of water to a boil. Cook the pasta according to package instructions.

While the pasta is cooking, place the olive oil in a large, nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the mushrooms, green onions, garlic and bell pepper, and cook, stirring frequently, until the mushrooms begin to brown, about 4 minutes. Add the can of tomatoes, the diced chicken, basil, sugar, salt and balsamic vinegar and bring mixture to a simmer. Cook for 5 to 6 minutes, until the chicken is firm when pierced with a fork. Turn off the heat and keep the sauce warm.

When the tortellini is tender, drain it thoroughly. Add the tortellini to the skillet and stir to coat the pasta with the sauce. Transfer to a serving dish and sprinkle top with the Parmesan cheese.

Per serving: calories, 170; protein, 11.7 grams; carbohydrate, 19 grams; fat, 6.7 grams (33 percent of calories

Pub Date: 4/07/96

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