Tortellini with Roasted Pumpkin and Mushroom


Tortellini is a ring shape pasta that has a filling.  I added roasted vegetables to this dish and mixed it with pesto.  The pumpkin adds the sweetness, the pesto has a tangy taste and mushroom has an earthy flavour.


4 cups tortellini

500g pumpkin diced

500g mushroom

2 cups spinach

3 tbsp.. olive oil

2 tsp. Italian herbs

Salt to season (optional)

2 tbsp. Nutty Pesto



Preheat oven to 180ºC

Line two baking trays with non stick papers.  Put pumpkins in the bowl add 1 tbsp. of the olive oil and 1 tsp pf the Italian herb and mix.  Place on the tray evenly and place in the oven. Bake for 25 minutes or until  cooked through.

In another bowl add the 1tbsp pf olive oil and the remaining 1 tsp of  Italian herbs and mix.  Place in the oven.  Bake for  20-225 minutes or until browned.

Cook tortellini according to packet instructions.

In a saucepan heat the pesto with the remaining olive oil for a minute or two.  Make sure it doesn’t burn.  Add the pasta, mushroom and pumpkin and mix.  Put the heat off and let it cool.  Serve with spinach.



This dish serves 4

Feel free to add other vegetables.


Try these pasta  dishes

Pasta with Pesto and Meatballs

Sardines & Chilli Linguine

Rigatoni with Chicken and Broccoli




Pasta Marinara


I love seafood because it is delicious, especially prawns. Seafood is a good source of protein and vitamins.   This week I made Pasta Marinara. The Marinara mix consisted of mussels, prawns, fish and calamari.  I used the tomato sauce ingredients from the Beef Patties with Mashed Potatoes dish to make the marinara sauce.


700g fresh Marinara mix

1 onion

1 large capsicum

4 garlics cloves crushed

400g canned tomatoes

½ cup basil

½ red chilli (optional)

1 tbsp. olive oil

1½ cups water

Season with salt and pepper.

Handful of parmesan chase to sprinkle

400g Pasta



Add 1 tbsp. of olive oil on a non stick pan on high heat, fry the marinara for 3-6 minutes or until cooked.

Remove marinara from saucepan, reduce heat to medium and add olive oil.  Add the onions, capsicum, chilli and garlic and cook for 5 minutes or until soft.

Add the canned tomatoes and cook for two minutes. Add water and bring to the boil.

Add the marinara mix in the saucepan, reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes or until sauce is thick,

Chop basil and stir through and put heat off.

Cook pasta according to packet instructions.

Add pasts and marinara in a bowl and sprinkle cheese.



This dish serves 4


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Rigatoni with Chicken and Broccoli

Pasta with Pesto and Meatballs








I had a  craving for lasagne and I decided to make one without using the white sauce and add some veggies. This dish has layers of meat, lasagne sheets and  a layer of spinach and ricotta  instead of melted cheese.  I didn’t miss the white sauce when I ate it.


To make the meat sauce 

500g mince beef

3 medium tomatoes chopped

213 g  canned tomatoes

40 ml tomato paste (2 tbsp.)

½ an inion’1 crushed garlic

½ a cup beef stock

1 tbsp. basil leaves

1 tbsp.. thyme

tbsp. oregano

tbsp. olive oil

Salt and pepper for seasoning.


To make the Spinach

500g frozen spinach, thawed and remove excess moisture by squeezing.

400g ricotta reduced fat

30g Parmesan cheese

1 egg


For the Lasagne

4 fresh lasagne sheets



To make Meat Sauce

Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat.  Add onion and garlic , cook until onion is soft.  Add the beef, remove any lumps, cook until browned.

Add the stock, tomato paste, chopped tomatoes and canned tomatoes. Simmer uncovered for 30 minutes or until mixture is thick.

Put hear off and add the herbs.  Season with salt and pepper.


To make Spinach

Beat egg in a bowl, add spinach ricotta and 15g of the parmesan cheese.  Mix until all is combined.  Set Aside.


To Make Lasagne

Preheat oven to 180ºC

Remove lasagne baking dish.  Pour a bit of the meat mixture at the bottom of the dish.  Add the first layer of lasagne sheet.  Pour the mixture over the Lasagne sheet.  Make sure it’s even.  Add another layer of lasagne sheet and pour the meat mixture.  Continue for the rest.

Once you reach the top layer, add the spinach evenly on the lasagne sheet.  Sprinkle the remaining parmesan cheese.

Bake for 30-40 minutes or until cooked.



This dish serves 6

If there is remaining spinach, lasagne sheet, sauce and tomatoes make Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni

Try these Pasta dishes

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Pasta with Pesto and Meatballs










Rigatoni with Chicken and Broccoli



Rigatoni is a tube shape pasta which I used to make this delicious and simple dish.  You can use leftover chicken for this dish instead of grilled or cooked chicken.   The Rigatoni is combined with broccoli, sundried tomatoes, coriander and a squeeze of lemon.


4½ cups rigatoni

400g grilled chicken

400g broccoli florets

40g sundried tomatoes

2 tbsp. oil

1 lemon

2-3 tbsp. coriander



If you are not using leftover chicken. Preheat oven to 200°C.

Season the chicken with  Italian herbs, salt and pepper.  Grill chicken for 25-30 minutes or until cooked. (Use 1 tsp. of Italian herbs.)

Cook Pasta according to packet instructions.

Boil Broccoli in boiling water for 3-5 minutes then refresh in cold water and then drain.

Chop sundried tomatoes and coriander and add to a bowl with the broccoli and Pasta.  Squeeze lemon and season with salt and pepper.



This dish serves 4

Try another leftover recipe.

Leftover Chicken Salad

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Poached Chicken Meatballs

Pasta with Pesto and Meatballs

Sardines & Chilli Linguine















Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni


Spinach is a good source of zinc, iron and calcium.  Eating spinach helps your eyes, muscles, bones and blood pressure.  Ricotta absorbs calcium and vitamin B.


For the filling

400g light ricoota cheese

500g frozen spinach thawed and moisture removed

For the tomato Sauce

2 canned tomatoes

1 onion

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 crushed garlics

For the Cannelloni

6-8 Fresh Lasagne sheets

30g parmesan cheese

Italian herbs to sprinkle



For the Sauce

In a pan add the oil and fry the onions until soft.  Add the garlic and fry for 30seconds.

Add the tomatoes and bring to the boil, reduce the heat to low and simmer for 25-30 minutes.

For the Filling and Cannelloni

Preheat oven to 180ºc if using fan force.

Put the ricotta in the bowl and add the spinach.  Mix until well combined.

Cut the lasagne sheets in half.  Using the longer side, add the spinach and ricotta and roll and place on a tray.

Once completed. pour a bit of the tomato sauce on a baking dish to let the cannelloni cook in the bottom.  Place the cannelloni’s and pour the remaking sauce, making sure you cover all the edges.

Sprinkle Parmesan cheese and Italian herbs  on the cannelloni and bake for 30 minutes or until cooked.


Dish serves 4


Try these pasta  dishes


Rigatoni with Chicken and Broccoli

Pasta with Pesto and Meatballs









Poached Chicken Meatballs


I love this poached chicken ball, it is mixed in ricotta, olives and herb and poached in pasta sauce.At first, I was worried the meatballs will crumble when poached but it maintained its shape and absorbed the flavours beautifully.


350g chicken mince

100g fresh ricotta

¼ cup chopped black olives

2 tsp. grated lemon rind

2 tsp. Italian herbs

375g bottled pasta sauce

1 cup chicken stock

Salt and Pepper



Combine and mix  the mince, ricotta, olives, rind and herbs, salt and pepper in a bowl.   Once all ingredients are combined use wet hands to roll the meatballs.    Make 12-14 balls.

Heat the pasta and stock in a saucepan. Once it begins to boil add the balls in the sauce and reduce the heat to medium to simmer.

Poach the meatballs until it is firm and cooked through.

Serve with Pasta


Serves 4

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Pasta with Pesto and Meatballs

Rigatoni with Chicken and Broccoli

Sardines & Chilli Linguine







Nutty Pesto


I love this pesto because it’s versatile.  It can be stirred into boiled pasta or used as a sandwich spread.  The creaminess from the nuts and the tanginess from the lemon makes this pesto one of my favourites.


½ cup chopped almonds

½ cup chopped cashew nuts

2 cups basil leaves

2 crushed garlics

Juice of one lemon

¼ cup olive oil

¼ cup parmesan

2 tbsp. water

salt and pepper .



Add the nuts in a food processor with the basil.  Process until nuts is grounded and basil is shredded.

Add garlic, lemon, parmesan, salt and pepper and continue processing.  Add water one spoon at a time while processing.

Once the pesto is creamy and smooth, remove from the processor and place it in the jar.






Sardines & Chilli Linguine


A delicious and simple dish to make for dinner. I have used both tuna and sardine to make this dish and they are equally delicious.


120 g Linguini
1 bunch broccolini
105 g Sardine in olive oil
Dried Chilli flakes
2 garlics
100 g cherry tomatoes

Boil pasta according to box instructions.
Cut Broccolini and when pasta is almost ready place the broccolini in water for two minutes.
Heat the olive oil from the sardines and add the garlic and chilli flakes. Stir for a new seconds until you get the fragrance.
Add the sardines in the oil and mash them.
Put the tomatoes and pasta in the sardine mixture and toss through.


Serves two
Use a different pasta if you wish.
You can use tuna in olive oil if you want.
Add chilli to your liking (1/4 tsp to 1 tsp).

Try these pasta dishes

Rigatoni with Chicken and Broccoli

Pasta with Pesto and Meatballs

Poached Chicken Meatballs