Bulk Up Your Pasta

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3.5 hours later, my formerly blue bedroom is yellow, and we’ve got that much more money back on our security deposit.  Wahoo!


The quest to eat away my fridge and pantry continues!  I killed off chips + salsa while painting:


And then I pulled some cheese and spinach ravioli out of the back of the fridge.  To add some veggies to my life, I bulked it up with zucchini and artichokes.


I had about 1.5 servings of pasta, a whole stir-fried zucchini, and bunch of canned artichokes.


It was SO good.


Wanna know how to cook artichokes in olive oil and not grease-up sandwiches, salads, and pasta? (Artichokes can taste REALLY good or REALLY bad.) The key is to rinse them under hot water and then stir-fry in a dry wok for about 4 – 5 minutes on high.  The result is really lovely, tender ‘chokes.  You’ll love it!


Off to sleep in my painted-scented bedroom!  Ick.  :( 



  • Jessica @ The Process of Healing June 23, 2010, 9:10 pm

    That pasta sounds so good!! And stir-fried zuchinni is the best!

  • Kaz June 23, 2010, 9:19 pm

    That pasta looks really yummy!

    Oosh, the smell of paint makes me dizzy. =P Congrats on getting it done, though. 😀 I’d do the same thing for a return on my deposit; every bit helps.

  • Amanda @ Vegacious June 23, 2010, 9:19 pm

    Looks delicious! This was on my menu for Friday night as a matter of fact – pretty much exactly how you had it with the addition of eggplant. 🙂

  • Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine June 23, 2010, 9:23 pm

    Thanks for the artichoke tip! I love artichokes, but hate when you can’t even taste them through the oil. Hope you can open a window tonight- paint fumes can really get to your head!

  • Kelly June 23, 2010, 9:30 pm

    I love adding veggies to my pasta!
    I’m surprised they want you to paint the apartment back to yellow, I think more people would like the blue!

  • Julie @ pickley pear June 23, 2010, 9:32 pm

    Canned artichokes are the best. I drain them as best I can. Extra veggies can make pasta super filling!!

  • Sarah June 23, 2010, 9:34 pm

    It looks like you used canned artichokes here, but which do you usually use and is there a big difference? I’ve never cooked them, but I like them in salads (usually at restaurants). I’ve always been a little leery of canned artichokes at the grocery store. I suppose the ones at restaurants are canned, anyhow. Wow, who knew I could write so many sentences about artichokes?!

    • Caitlin June 23, 2010, 9:42 pm

      i buy the big jar of canned chokes in olive oil from costco. they are good! i tried to cook a fresh one once and it was a disaster.

  • Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg June 23, 2010, 9:37 pm

    I actually really love the scent of paint 🙂

    Yummy dinner!

  • jenny in new york June 23, 2010, 9:39 pm

    Mmmm fresh cooked artichokes with butter is one of my FAVORITE foods. yum

  • Whitney @ Whitinspired June 23, 2010, 9:40 pm

    I love the smell of paint. I’m a weirdo. Congrats on making it through painting though…it’s such hard work!

  • Jessica @ How Sweet It Is June 23, 2010, 9:43 pm

    I’ve actually only ever had really good experiences with artichokes. But that is a great trick. 🙂

  • Lauren (Clean Eats in the Dirty South) June 23, 2010, 9:44 pm

    i don’t think i’ve ever liked artichokes… i’ll have to try this!

  • Janelle June 23, 2010, 9:45 pm

    I’ve had artichokes grilled fresh a few times from a restaurant, and they were fabulous – but my attempts to try-this-at-home have been a disaster. Sounds like we need an artichoke tutorial!

  • Lisa (bakebikeblog) June 23, 2010, 9:54 pm

    Great tip re the artichokes!!!

  • Megan@EatScrapRun June 23, 2010, 9:59 pm

    I have a can of artichokes that I am too scared to try…now I know how to cook them, thanks!

    I agree with Ashley – you seem to have a lot of good food left for moving this weekend. I don’t have that much food and I am not even moving.

  • ashleigh June 23, 2010, 10:01 pm

    pasta with tons of veggies is one of my favorite quick healthy week night meals. I love adding lots and lots of spinach!

  • Paige @Running Around Normal June 23, 2010, 10:04 pm

    That’s my favorite way to eat pasta – pile on the veggies! I had polenta the other day, and to bulk it up I added any veggie that made sense to add- and combined it all with red sauce.

  • Heather (Heather's Dish) June 23, 2010, 10:10 pm

    blech…the paint smell is NO bueno for trying to sleep! hope it goes well!

  • Brie @ Brie Fit June 23, 2010, 10:16 pm

    Mmmm…I love ravioli.

  • Wei-Wei June 23, 2010, 10:42 pm

    Hahaha “killed off”! I like how you’re picturing your food as little minions who MUST. BE. DESTROYED. Okay maybe not you, but me 😉

    I’ve only ever had artichokes once, and that was eating the entire thing… I haven’t really had jarred/canned artichoke hearts, but I do know that they are delicious fresh, too! 🙂


  • Amber K @ sparkpeople June 23, 2010, 11:00 pm

    Great tip for artichokes, I’ll have to try that!

  • Jenna (Hello, I Love You) June 23, 2010, 11:05 pm

    I love artichokes but I am usually scared to make them at home. I might try them now because of this tip though! Thanks! 🙂

  • Cynthia (It All Changes) June 23, 2010, 11:21 pm

    I love canned artichokes to put it in pasta.

  • Kellie June 23, 2010, 11:43 pm

    maybe you should sleep on the floor in the living room. Paint fumes suck!

  • Nicole June 23, 2010, 11:49 pm

    Caitlyn, that pasta is making me hungry and its 10pm ! haha I love artichokes, especially on homemade veggie pizza, yummmm 🙂

    Good luck with your move!

  • Sarah for Real June 24, 2010, 12:37 am

    Ah HA! I just bought the Costco jar of artichoke hearts. I will have to try rinsing them too because I thought they were too oily.

    Next time you paint, you might consider a low-VOC paint. They are becoming very common these days, especially if you go to an actual paint store, not Home Depot. If you paint in your new place, I definitely recommend the extra $10 or $20. It’s worth it for your health.

  • Laura (Starloz) June 24, 2010, 2:19 am

    I might try rinsing artichokes in the future, great idea!

  • Freya @ Brit Chick Runs June 24, 2010, 4:01 am

    Oohhh my. That pasta looks SO good! It’s been about 2 months since I last had stuffed pasta *tear* 🙁

  • Jaclyn June 24, 2010, 5:10 am

    I’m very impressed with all your hard work in painting–I’ve done it and believe me, it’s no easy feat! Good job though and you’ll be happy uo did it when you see the reappearing down payment!!

    I love *bulking up* pasta like this–veg always makes it omre flavorful and nutritious, love it!

  • Shannon @ Before Sunrise June 24, 2010, 6:38 am

    I’m moving in 4 weeks and my entire apartment needs to be painted back to white (we painted every freakin room when we moved in!)… ugh let the tourture begin.
    Congrats on getting your painting done! And dinner looked delish!

  • Tracey @ I'm Not Superhuman June 24, 2010, 8:32 am

    Ugh, the paint smell gives me a headache. Last time I painted I used no-VOC paint and it was great. But cost a small fortune. I’m now down a kidney. 🙂

  • Sarah (Running to Slow Things Down) June 24, 2010, 8:39 am

    Mmm..thanks for the info on the ‘chokes! I love them when I’m eating out but haven’t been able to make them taste good at home. I’ll have to try this! 😀

  • Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin June 24, 2010, 8:58 am

    I always bulk up my pasta dishes with a heap ton of veggies. I find it too boring with just pasta and sauce alone!

  • Camille June 24, 2010, 9:02 am

    Oooh, I love artichokes! Dinner looks like an epic win!

  • Katherine June 24, 2010, 9:40 am

    Yum! I always bulk up foods with veggies (salsa with coleslaw mixed in or frozen chopped carrot/corn/pea blend) it’s so good

  • Maria June 24, 2010, 10:31 am

    Caitlin, I love your food tips, especially this one about pasta. I’m always looking for new ways to jazz up my food.


  • Kacy June 24, 2010, 10:47 am

    I love adding artichokes to pasta. Or baking artichokes. Artichokes are delicious! And adding squash to bulk up pasta is great because the texture is so similar to pasta. Love it.

  • Amanda June 24, 2010, 10:51 am

    Have you tried Publix’s black bean dip? If you haven’t TRY IT BEFORE YOU MOVE! I just returned from Florida and I flew home with three jars. BEST jarred black bean dip I’ve ever had!

    • caitlin June 24, 2010, 11:01 am

      No i haven’t!!! i must go grab some!

  • Kristina June 24, 2010, 11:11 am

    thanks for the arti – info… I LOVE artichokes, but rarely cook with them myself, because I didn’t want to use canned and fresh look too intimidating! 🙂

    I will try canned, and I will rinse – the oil is also what gets to me, so THANKS!

  • Allie June 24, 2010, 11:44 am

    Your pasta dish looks really good! Love the tip about artichokes. My family always cooks them and I love them stuffed!

  • Erika June 24, 2010, 12:12 pm

    Thank you so much on the artichoke tip! I’ve had them before but have never cooked with them myself. I just bought two jars and have wondered what to do next… Thanks again!

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