Less is definitely more with this robustly flavoured, low-fat pasta sauce that just lightly coats the pasta in traditional Italian style. This makes a satisfying carbohydrate-packed starter that will serve 6 before a light main course, or a simple meal for 4 with a crunchy salad and fruit to follow.
Parmesan cheese is not truly vegetarian, as it contains animal rennet. To make this dish 100% vegetarian, omit the cheese or find a suitable vegetarian substitute made without animal rennet. In supermarkets look for the 'parmesan style hard cheeses' which are suitable for vegetarians.
Make Italian-style vongole or clam sauce by adding 1 can clams, about 300 g, well drained, to the sauce at the end of step 3. Use sprigs of fresh parsley instead of rosemary. The clams, a good low-fat source of iron, should not be boiled or they will become tough, so simmer the sauce very gently while you cook the pasta. * Boost the dietary fibre by using wholemeal tagliatelle or other noodles. * For a more substantial sauce, without increasing the fat, add fresh vegetables cut into bite-sized pieces in step 3 and simmer until they are just tender but still crisp.
Lycopene, the natural pigment that gives tomatoes their colour, can reduce the risk of heart disease and prostate cancer. A 6-year study at Harvard medical school found that eating tomato products more than twice a week was associated with a reduced risk of prostate cancer of up to 34%. Processed tomatoes (canned or tomato purée) contain higher concentrations of lycopene than fresh tomatoes.
A, calcium * C, E, niacin, copper