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Gemelli Pasta with Baby 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, as in the similar and related recipes links, and I thought they would make a great sauce for pasta. This is a quick, easy and delicious main dish. 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 penne, which works just as well.


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.