Penne with Spinach in Low Calorie White Sauce

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Who does not drool at the thought of a creamy white sauce? Nevertheless, white sauce loaded with refined flour, butter and milk is hardly a healthy option. Here, in this innovative creation, whole wheat penne is tossed in a unique low-calorie white sauce made with minimal quantity of low-fat butter, whole wheat flour and low-fat milk. Cauliflower imparts an interestingly coarse mouth-feel to the sauce, while spinach adds to its health quotient. By reducing the quantity of penne and increasing the quota of vegetables, the Penne with Spinach in Low Calorie White Sauce is also made more fibrous and healthful than the usual pasta recipes. Enjoy this delicious treat occasionally, in moderation.

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Preparation Time:    Cooking Time:     Makes 4 servings
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For The Low Calorie Spinach White Sauce
1 1/2 cups chopped cauliflower
1 tsp low-fat butter
1 tbsp whole wheat flour (gehun ka atta)
1 cup low-fat milk , 99.7% fat-free
salt and freshly ground black pepper (kalimirch) to taste
1 cup chopped and blanched spinach (palak)

Other Ingredients
1 1/2 cups cooked whole wheat penne
1 tsp low-fat butter
1 tsp finely chopped garlic (lehsun)
3/4 cup coloured capsicum cubes (red , yellow and green)
1/2 cup blanched broccoli florets
1 1/2 tsp chilli flakes
1 tsp mixed herbs
salt to taste

For the low calorie spinach white sauce

  1. Combine the cauliflower and 2 cups of water in a deep non-stick pan and mix well. Cover with a lid and cook on a medium flame for 7 to 8 minutes or till the cauliflower softens and the water has almost evaporated. Keep aside to cool slightly.
  2. Blend the cauliflower (along with the little water remaining) in a mixer to a smooth purée and strain it using a strainer. Keep aside.
  3. Heat the butter in a broad non-stick pan, add the wheat flour and sauté on a medium flame for a few seconds or till the wheat flour turns light brown in colour.
  4. Add the milk and cauliflower purée, mix well using a whisk till no lumps remain and bring to a boil.
  5. Add the salt and pepper powder, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 1 minute, while stirring occasionally.
  6. Add the blanched spinach, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 1 minute, while stirring occasionally. Keep aside.

How to proceed

  1. Heat the butter in a broad on-stick pan, add the garlic and sauté on a medium flame for a few seconds.
  2. Add the capsicum and broccoli, mix well and sauté on a medium flame for 2 minutes.
  3. Add the prepared low calorie spinach white sauce, chilli flakes, mixed herbs and salt, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 1 to 2 minutes, while stirring occasionally.
  4. Add the cooked penne, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 1 minute, while stirring occasionally.
  5. Serve immediately.

Italian Style Tossed Salad 
Three Bean Salad ( Healthy Heart ) 

Nutrient values per serving
20.5 gm 2.2 gm

RECIPE SOURCE : Healthy Heart CookbookBuy this cookbook
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 on 18 Nov 14 02:43 PM

This pasta cooked in low cal white sauce tastes just awesome... I could not really make out the difference between cheese laden pastas and this healthy Italian delicacy. True bliss for weight watchers...
 on 18 Jun 12 09:42 AM

Nourishing spinach with whole wheat pasta tossed with low fat cottage cheese and flavored lightly with nut meg powder.