Grecian Kalamata Pasta

TGIF, yes? Gahhh, I am officially "poo-pooing" this entire week, Madeline style. Unfortunately, there won't be any playing outside this weekend. We have absolutely zero snow, 80 mph winds, and an air-quality advisory. Poo poo! Looks like it will be a weekend filled with homemade bagel baking, yogilates, Game of Thrones reading, and Modern Family watching. That actually doesn't sound too bad. You know what else doesn't sound bad? This Grecian Kalamata Pasta. It's a filling pasta dish with Greek flair, including Kalamata olives, Roma tomatoes, and spinach. Lentils give it a hefty protein boost. 

Produce On Parade - Grecian Kalamata OlivesAlso, I really like this Greek proverb so I thought I would share with you. 

Produce On Parade - Grecian Kalamata OlivesIsn't that nice?

Produce On Parade - Grecian Kalamata Olives

Grecian Kalamata Pasta    

Serves 8

Notes: Be sure to save 1/4 cup of the pasta water for the sauce. Avoid red lentils for this dish, as they wouldn't hold up as well as brown or green.

  • Sustenance: 
  • 1/2 cup brown or green lentils, dry
  • 1 cup water
  • 16 oz. pasta (penne or similar), dry
  • Sauce:
  • 1/2 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
  • Goodies:
  • 3 Roma tomatoes, seeded and chopped (save innards and seeds)
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 6 oz. fresh spinach (3 large handfuls), rough chopped
  • 1/2 small red onion, diced
  • 1 cup pitted Kalamata olives, sliced
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped

In a small saucepan, bring the lentils and water to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover, and allow to cook for about 25 minutes, or until the tender. Drain and set aside.

Produce On Parade - Grecian Kalamata OlivesBring a large saucepan full of salted water to a boil for the pasta. Add pasta and cook according to package for al dente pasta. You will want it slightly undercooked for this recipe. Drain, reserving 1/4 cup of the water and set aside.

Produce On Parade - Grecian Kalamata OlivesMeanwhile, in a food processor add the sauce ingredients and blend until smooth.

Produce On Parade - Grecian Kalamata OlivesCut the tomatoes in half and scoop out the innards with a spoon. Add only the innards to the processor and blend until well incorporated. 

In a large frying pan, heat 1 Tbsp. of olive oil. Add in the goodie ingredients except for the olives and walnuts. Saute until the onions are browned. Cover with a lid for a minute or two during, to wilt the spinach. 

Produce On Parade - Grecian Kalamata Olives Produce On Parade - Grecian Kalamata OlivesAdd the lentils, sauce, goodies, olives, walnuts, and reserved pasta water to the cooked and drained pasta. Stir well to coat. 

Produce On Parade - Grecian Kalamata OlivesServe hot!

I like this calming song: 

[soundcloud url="" params="color=8eb6a8&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_artwork=true" width="100%" height="166" iframe="true" /]

[yumprint-recipe id='75']

Greek Hummus Salad Dressing

It's no secret that I do most of the grocery shopping in our house. Every once and awhile Todd will go to Costco, in Anchorage where he works. He always manages to bring home something that he picked out and that was not on our the list. Most recently, he came home with a 500 pack of single serving hummus tins. If you're vegan, you probably know of which I speak. I was delighted that he'd brought home something healthy! However, hummus usually requires vegetables. Vegetables that need to be washed, chopped and put in a little container to be brought along to work, to be eaten. Having forgotten that we had this 500 pack of hummus tins (in the back of the fridge), necessary veggie preparation did not happen. 

While cleaning the fridge this weekend I stumbled upon said hummus tins and took a peek at the expiration date.'s tomorrow, as in December 24rd. I'm not saying that these won't be consumed long after their expiration date, because they will, let's be real. However, we should probably get hoppin' on that. I had some leftover lettuce from several days earlier that needed to be eaten and I thought it would be a good idea to combine all the things that were beginning to decay in the fridge, to make one meal. This includes the kalamata olives, their original purchase date is probably going on a few years...if I die within the next few days, you'll know why. 

May I suggest finding ingredients for your salad dressing? Regardless, this salad dressing is awesome! It's creamy and thick, thanks to the hummus and not overloaded with oil, which can be appreciated. The kalamata olives lend a miso-esc umami flavor, the lemon juice a tartness, pinch of sugar a sweetness and the paprika a smoky profile.


This dressing couldn't be easier, so if you find yourself truly fortunate enough to have a 500 pack of single serving hummus tins a little past their prime, you now know what to do.  

Greek Hummus Salad Dressing

Makes about 1 1/2 cups

  • 1/2 cup hummus (your favorite kind, Greek would be perfect)
  • 1 lemon, juiced (1/4 cup)
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp. paprika
  • pinch of vegan sugar
  • 10 kalamata olives, minced

In a small bowl, whisk together everything except the olives.

hummusdressing (5 of 10)Once well combined, stir in the olives. 

hummus1Serve over your favorite salad, or greek salad! 

hummus2I served mine over a simple mix of spinach, romaine lettuce and arugula.

hummusdressing (6 of 10) hummusdressing (8 of 10)Listening to Glasvegas – A Snowflake Fell (And It Felt Like A Kiss)


[yumprint-recipe id='55']Slightly adapted from Gormandize With Us