This really is my most favorite pasta recipe: a little sweet and a little savory. Definitely “lick-the-plate-clean” good!
A couple years back, a friend and I began exchanging vegetarian recipes as we tried them. The rules for this exchanges was that it could not just be any vegetarian recipes. It had to be only the ones that were incredible. The kind we would serve to company. The kind we would make again. And again. And again. This recipe, from blogger Iowagirleats, was one of those recipes. It has since become a staple in the Saville family home. As I was cooking it the other night I realized that this was likely a very kidney-friendly recipe – especially for CKD 3 and 4. I did a quick nutritional analysis on it, and found out that indeed, this would work for a CKD diet. For patients on dialysis you could add some chicken to bulk up the protein. It has a couple salty ingredients (kalamata olives and feta) but these are just used as a sprinkling on the top. The ingredients might seem just a little strange for pasta, but trust me on this, this recipe is incredible. The sweet of the Craisins combined with the salty of the kalamata olives and feta is fantastic. AND…this is a beautiful dish to serve with all its colors. We used whole wheat spaghetti, but you can use white spaghetti if that is your preference. White spaghetti has a little less potassium and phosphorus, but also has less fiber and other nutrients.
Other than omitting the extra added salt, I didn’t change anything about this recipe from the original. Here is the original recipe from Iowa Girl Eats.
If you are on dialysis, you can add some chicken to this recipe would to increase protein intake!
- 2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- 6 cloves Garlic (thinly sliced)
- ½ small Red Onion (minced)
- ¼ cup Dried Cranberries
- 4 cups Kale, fresh (torn or thinly sliced)
- ¼ cup Water
- 4 oz, dry Spaghetti Noodles (Choose white or wheat noodles. Potassium and phosphorus content differs in these two products.)
- ¼ cup, sliced and pitted Kalamata Olives
- 2 Tbsp, crumbled Feta Cheese
- Heat olive oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet. Add garlic slices then cook, stirring near constantly, until slices are pale golden brown. Remove to a plate and set aside.
- Turn heat down to medium then add red onion. Season with salt and pepper then cook until golden-brown and tender, about 3 minutes. Add cranberries and kale, season with more salt and pepper, then add water, place a lid on top of the skillet and cook for 4-5 minutes, or until kale is tender.
- Add spaghetti to a large pot of salted, boiling water then cook until al dente.
- Add kalamata olives to cooked kale and cranberry mixture. Transfer cooked spaghetti to skillet then toss to combine all ingredients. Add up to ¼ cup pasta cooking water if needed. Divide between two plates then top with 1 Tablespoon feta cheese and half the cooked garlic slices each.
Potassium: 361 mg (Might seem like a lot, but this is a pretty big portion!)
I’ve already stated that I love this dish – really really really love this dish. I thought it would probably work for a renal diet when I was cooking it the other night and once I did the nutrient analysis I was happy to see, that indeed it is something I could recommend to my patients.
Article Credit: Jessianna Saville, MS, RDN, LD, CSR
Photo Credits: Rebecca Barksdale