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Whole Wheat Pasta: What kind of sauce do you like to serve it w/?

Chinon00 Apr 27, 2013 05:31 PM

I've tried whole wheat pasta w/ traditional red sauces and hated it. The whole wheat taste just overwhelms the sauce. I've had success using whole wheat pasta w/ bigger dressings featuring spinach and olives. Do you like whole wheat pasta and what sauces do you serve it with (other than traditional red)?

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    sedimental RE: Chinon00 Apr 27, 2013 06:08 PM

    I eat very little pasta, but when I do, it is either whole wheat or soba noodle. Both do well with Asian flavors (sesame oil, green veg, chili) or Greek flavors ( feta, olives, artichoke).

    I think they both do well as room temp pasta "salads" as well.

    1. Kris in Beijing RE: Chinon00 Apr 27, 2013 07:12 PM

      Agree with Sedimental -- room temperature has been most successful for me.
      Both standard red and cream sauces do not seem to fit well with wh-wh-p, but vinegars and more spicy flavours seem to.

      In regards to Asian, I also have had little success with wh-wh-p's and Thai flavours. The sesame is okay, but the subtlety seems to get lost.

      Oddly, the best wh-wh-p I've made was a play on "suddenly salad" with rotini: Kraft Greek Dressing, made with extra virgin olive oil, grape tomatoes, cubed cucumbers, sliced black olives, shredded cheddar and finely chopped broccoli.

      1. sarahjay RE: Chinon00 Apr 27, 2013 10:01 PM

        I like it best with hearty vegetables and pepper flakes and bacon ( I cook chopped bacon, add onion and garlic then veg while the pasta cooks, add pasta, some pasta water and red pepper flakes, sometimes parmesan, salt to taste) rather than traditional pasta sauces. It's especially good with cauliflower or asparagus

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          greymalkin RE: Chinon00 Apr 27, 2013 10:12 PM

          I really like ww pasta with a garlicky spicy pesto. The nutty, heartier pasta goes well with the strong pesto flavors.

          1. mbfant RE: Chinon00 Apr 27, 2013 10:38 PM

            Try "bigoli in salsa," a traditional Italian (Veneto) dish that actually calls for whole-wheat spaghetti (traditionally thick and extruded through a hand-cranked machine, but store-bought whole-wheat spaghetti will do). The "salsa" is made mainly of anchovies and onions cooked way down.

            1 Reply
            1. re: mbfant
              Chinon00 RE: mbfant Dec 29, 2013 02:04 PM

              Made whole wheat egg noodles tonight (wife is borderline diabetic) as a side w/ roasted chicken. Figured some butter and sweet peas would do the trick to make it taste better. Eh no, cardboard taste of whole wheat pasta still dominanted. I recalled your post and that I had some anchovie paste in the frig and added a tablespoon. Delicious. Thank you.

            2. fldhkybnva RE: Chinon00 Apr 27, 2013 11:50 PM

              I don't eat much pasta but when I do it's whole wheat and like it both with red and white sauces.

              1. Paprikaboy RE: Chinon00 Apr 28, 2013 01:36 AM

                The flippant answer would be anything that masks the flavour of the pasta. I don't really like whole wheat pasta and find the texture really grainy.

                I have though had to agree to have it occaisonally and have had some success with this Nigel Slater sausage and whole wheat pasta recipe.


                1. ipsedixit RE: Chinon00 Apr 28, 2013 11:45 AM

                  I really like ww pasta with a tomato based red sauce. I find that it brings a nice earthy undertone to the sauce.

                  1. Chinon00 RE: Chinon00 Apr 29, 2013 06:59 PM

                    Made an Asian pasta salad w/ whole wheat. Sesame oil, soy sauce, honey, honey roasted peanuts, scallions, cilantro, purple cabbage and a little beef. Nice.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Chinon00
                      sedimental RE: Chinon00 Apr 29, 2013 07:47 PM

                      That sounds really good! I love peanuts, nice touch with the purple cabbage.

                    2. splatgirl RE: Chinon00 Apr 30, 2013 05:53 AM

                      I agree that WW pasta does not play nice with every sauce or topping, but the brand makes a huge difference. Some are really wheaty, others not. I find the Bionature brand the most like traditional white flour pasta in terms of flavor and texture. I just saw an episode of America's Test Kitchen that made the same pronouncement.

                      For the more bossy WW brands, I like a saute of sausage, onion and sturdy greens with EVOO and maybe some balsamic. The tannic quality of the greens and the richness of sausage really stand up to the pasta.

                      1. greygarious RE: Chinon00 Apr 30, 2013 10:54 AM

                        If you don't want to spend four times the price of regular pasta to get whole wheat pasta that tastes good, try mixing plain and an affordable brand of whole wheat. Cook equal amounts of both, together in the same pot. You don't get as much nutritional benefit but the taste is better, and it's still better for you than eating 100% white flour pasta.

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