Sunday, August 18, 2013

Whole Wheat Spaghetti with Kale, Kalamata Olives, Garlic Chips & Feta

Ever since moving to Vegas, and being in school all day, I've seriously neglected my usually exercise routine. When I wasn't in school, I committed myself to working out at least 4 times a week and up to 6 days a week. Now, I feel like all my time is spent in a chair - either in class, or studying all night after classes; that's how intense my PA program is. Giving myself 1 - 2 hours to exercise is hard to do, because either I feel guilty for not studying or I'm much too tired from studying and all I really want to do is sleep.

I'm trying to be better about it because I do notice that I have more energy when I work out but it's getting up and actually doing it that's the hard part. What makes it even harder is that the 24 Hour gyms here aren't up to par as in Orange County. The classes aren't motivating like they were back home! Since I haven't had much time to work out, I've at least tried to eat healthier which is hard too since it takes time to cook rather than resorting to fast food. 

This pasta is awesome because it has all of my favorite things: kale, kalamata olives and feta - with the unexpected addition of cranberries! I used whole wheat pasta to make it a little healthier and it's perfect for on-the-go lunches that I can bring to school. Enjoy!

Whole Wheat Spaghetti with Kale, Kalamata Olives, Garlic Chips & Feta
Yields: about 2 - 4 servings
Original recipe here.

2 tbsn. extra virgin olive oil
6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1/2 small red onion, minced
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/4 cup dried cranberries
4 cups torn kale
1/4 cup water
4 oz. whole wheat spaghetti
1/4 cup sliced, pitted kalamata olives
2 tbsn. crumbled feta cheese (I prefer French feta)

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the sliced garlic and fry, stirring occasionally, until golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon to a plate lined with a paper towel; set aside. Turn the heat down to medium heat and add the red onion. Season with salt and pepper and cook until tender and slightly browned, about 3 minutes. Add the cranberries and kale, season some more, then add the water. Place a lid on the pan and cook for 4 - 5 minutes or until the kale is tender. Meanwhile, cook the spaghetti according to the directions on the package, save some of the pasta water, set aside. Add the kalamata olives to the cooked mixture. Transfer the spaghetti noodles to the skillet and toss to combine. Add 1/4 cup of the pasta water, if needed. Top with the fried garlic and feta cheese.