Matzav Mazon: Perfect Pasta Dishes

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Pasta is generally an all-around favorite, especially with the kids. It can be a side dish or a main, meat dairy or pareve, saucy or plain, thick or thin, hot or cold, sweet or savory…you name it, and you can do it with pasta. For the health-conscious cook there usually whole-wheat and gluten-free options available in most kosher supermarkets. Pasta is also very forgiving: you can adapt and play with any of these recipes in terms of changing the temperature, vegetables, even proteins, and end up with a whole new option for lunch or dinner. Try out some of these fun international pasta recipes for interesting twists on an old favorite.

For even more delicious pasta recipes, go to

Ginger Noodles


1 (16 ounce) package vermicelli, cooked until al dente and drained
3 tablespoons peanut oil
6 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 heaping teaspoon minced garlic
½ cup pine nuts


Whisk together oil, soy sauce, sesame seeds, ginger, crushed red pepper and garlic. Toss with noodles. Garnish with pine nuts. Store in refrigerator and serve at room temperature.

Mexican Shells


1 cup small pasta shells, cooked and drained
1 (29 ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 (15 ounce) can black beans, drained
1 (4 ounce) can roasted chopped green chiles
1 (15 ounce) can corn kernels, drained
1 teaspoon Mexican seasoning


Mix all ingredients together and store in the refrigerator. Serve at room temperature. Garnish with avocado.

Penne with Tuna, Basil, and Lemon


1/2 pound penne
1 garlic clove
1 lemon
1/4 cup packed fresh basil leaves
a 6-ounce can tuna in olive oil (not drained)


Bring a 4-quart pasta pot three fourths full with salted water to a boil for penne. Mince garlic. Finely grate enough lemon zest to measure 1 tablespoon and squeeze 1 teaspoon juice. Cut basil into thin strips. In a large bowl toss together garlic, zest, juice, basil, and tuna with oil from can.

Boil penne until al dente and drain in a colander. Add penne to bowl and toss with salt and pepper to taste.

Pad Thai Salad


2 lbs. linguine, broken in half
4 tablespoon creamy peanut butter


1 cup soy sauce
½ cup rice vinegar
½ cup sesame oil
2 teaspoon crushed garlic
1 teaspoon crushed ginger
Toasted sesame seeds
Salted peanuts


Boil and drain linguine. Stir in peanut butter while pasta is still hot. Pour marinade over noodles. Add toasted sesame seeds and refrigerate. Garnish with scallions and peanuts. Serve at room temperature. (Can also be served hot).

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