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Gemelli with Lima Beans and Tomatoes

Serves 4 to 6

I got the idea for this recipe from an Italian friend. She made lima beans with tomatoes and basil, which is in the similar and related recipes. I thought it would make a great sauce for pasta and I was correct. This is a quick, easy, healthy and delicious Italian-inspired main dish.


Heat olive oil in large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add garlic and sauté for one minute. Add tomatoes, basil, salt and pepper. Cook for about 3 minutes. Add lima beans and stir. Cover pot and cook until beans are tender-crisp, about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, cook pasta in according to package directions for al dente. Drain, reserving a little of the pasta water. Add pasta to beans and stir thoroughly. If necessary, add a little of the reserved water to moisten everything. Toss in the fresh basil. Turn off the burner and let set about 2 minutes to allow pasta to absorb the flavors. Serve immediately, passing grated cheese separately.

Notes: I prefer to use baby lima beans in this sauce, but you can use regular. It might take a little longer for them to cook. Gemelli is like two short strands of fat spaghetti twisted together. I love it for sauces like this. Unfortunately, I rarely find it locally so I usually substitute rotini or penne. However, any short-cut pasta, regular or whole wheat, will be delicious.