Thursday, February 07, 2008

Whole wheat penne with sweet potatoes and leeks

Here is a real simple dish that you can serve up any night of the week. It's got lots of flavor, simple ingredients, and is good for you. The leeks practically melt into this dish, lending lots of mild oniony flavor. Next time I make this I'll probably wait until the sweet potatoes have cooked for a few minutes before adding the leeks, they really did practically melt away. I also added a cup of frozen peas a few minutes before the end, and skipped the nutmeg. Not on purpose though, I just forgot to add it. I finished off the dish with some grated pecorino romano. Did you know that pecorino romano is made from sheep's milk? It is. J can't have anything with cow's milk, it's an allergy, so parmesano reggiano is out. But sheep and goat's milk cheeses are alright, so we use pecorino romano on our pasta. The original recipe as seen in the February 2008 issue of Real Simple magazine can be found below. Enjoy!

multigrain pasta with sweet potatoes and leeks from Real Simple February 2008
hands-on time: 25 minutes | total time: 25 minutes | serves 4

12 ounces multigrain penne
4 teaspoons olive oil
3 leeks (white and light green parts), cut into half moons
3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1/4 cup fresh sage, chopped
1 pound sweet potatoes (1 large or two small), peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
Kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper
3/4 grated Parmesan or Pecorino Romano
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Cook the pasta according to the package directions. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking water.

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the leeks and cook, stirring, until they soften, 4 minutes. Stir in the garlic and sage and cook 2 minutes. Add the sweet potato, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper and cook, covered, stirring twice, until just tender, 6 to 8 minutes.

Stir in 1/2 cup Parmesan or Romano and the reserved cooking water and simmer, stirring, until the potatoes are fully tender, 2 to 4 minutes.

Add the cooked pasta and nutmeg and toss.

Divide amount individual bowls and sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan or Romano and 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper.



  1. This looks absolutely wonderful! But, I must admit, I've never found a whole wheat pasta that I like. I've been using Dreamfields, but I'd love to know of a good whole grain pasta brand.

  2. This looks like a good one, bud! Perhaps I'll give it a try this week!

  3. Hi Lydia, I use Bionaturae whole wheat pasta. Have you tried that brand yet?

    Hi Tina, you should! It's easy, tastes great, and can be easily modified if you've got some extra stuff you want to use to prevent waste :)

  4. Thanks for checking out my blog and all your kind comments!!! Your site is great, too! I LOVE sweet potatoes so I might be making this one soon....

  5. Hi Jenna, thanks for visiting my site too! This pasta dish was delicious, the sweet potatoes really made it great. I actually haven't made anything from Real Simple that wasn't good.

  6. My fiancee picked up the same copy of Real Simple and wanted to give this recipe a try. It sounds like it's a winner!