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Thursday, March 10, 2011

Tortellini Sostanza

Hi everyone!  How about a simplified version of the Pasta Sostanza recipe?

Tortellini Sostanza

I've decided to call this one Tortellini Sostanza and it's a much quicker dish to prepare than its precursor.  I've simplified it by using canned tomatoes instead of fresh whole tomatoes.  Also, I've excluded the "optional" items (capers and olives) not found in the Carrabba's dish.  And Carrabba's uses fresh baby spinach instead of fresh basil in their recipe.

Again, both Tiffany and I are extremely happy with the results of the recipe.  This recipe made enough sauce for 8 servings (16 ounces) of tortellini.  It was delicious, fresh and quite satisfying!

Note:  The following recipe makes sauce for 8 servings.  I am cooking 4 servings of tortellini and freezing remaining sauce.


  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin coconut oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 8 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1 can (dr wt 4 oz) diced mushrooms, drained
  • 2 cans (14.5 oz each) diced tomatoes with juice
  • 1 can (dr wt 8.5 oz) artichoke hearts, drained
  • 10 large fresh basil leaves, each torn into 3 to 4 pieces
  • Salt and ground white pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 tsp Italian herb seasoning
  • 8 ounce tortellini, dry (2 oz dry per serving)
  • 8 Tbsp Italian bread crumbs (1 Tbsp per serving)
Diced onions sauteing in coconut oil.
8 garlic cloves, roughly chopped.

  1. In medium saucepan, cook diced onion in coconut oil over medium heat approximately 8 to 10-minutes.  When diced onion are soft and translucent and about to caramelize, add roughly chopped garlic and cook 1 additional minute.
  2. Add diced tomatoes, drained diced mushrooms and Italian herb seasoning.  While simmering, add salt and white pepper to taste.  Cook approximately 20-minutes over medium heat until juices evaporate and sauce thickens. 
  3. Begin cooking tortellini according to package instructions.
  4. Within minutes of tortellini being done, turn off saucepan and add artichoke hearts and torn basil leaves.
  5. Cover and allow basil to wilt.
  6. Drain tortellini and add portion size (2 oz dry = 1 serving) to each bowl.
  7. For each serving, spoon 1/8th of sauce on top.
  8. Sprinkle 1 Tbsp Italian bread crumbs onto each bowl. 
Diced tomato & sliced mushroom added to sauteed onion & garlic.

Suggestion:  Use sliced fresh baby portabello mushroom in lieu of canned mushroom.  If substituting fresh for canned, add to diced onion after first 5-minutes of sauteing.

Freshly torn basil leaves added.
Steaming basil leaves.
Nutrition (per serving):

430-calories per serving

Hi-dee hi-dee it's-time-for-a-tortellini-meal-tonight-ho my friend. 

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