But naturally

Organic spinach and carrot flavoured fusilli with prune and lemongrass dressing

I’ve often imaged myself in knee high gumboots, wading through my personal vegetable patch, looking for the perfect piece of fresh tomato. I would someday like to dress up my salad with herbs that have been plucked from my own garden and roast crunchy carrots that have been unearthed minutes before they go into the oven.

Since I am far from ploughing my own patch, I often hit the weekly organic market where I can get my hands on locally grown vegetables and other goodies.

The whole idea of organic food fascinates me. Natural, unprocessed food that has not been through any drama has such a wholesome taste and texture. It manages to have a real taste that can never be found otherwise.

Recently, I visited an all-organic store in the neighbourhood city and got myself a packet of spinach and carrot flavoured pasta, among other things. Since the pasta had an obvious wheat flavour, I dressed it with a sweet and sour prune and lemongrass salad dressing. 

Ingredients for the dressing

5 large dry prunes

1 tea spoon dry lemon grass

½ cup extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon lemon juice

2 cloves of garlic

Green pepper as per taste

Salt as per taste

Method: Put all the ingredients in a blender and grind it into a course paste. Add more olive oil gradually to make the dressing smoother. Store it in an air tight container. This dressing can last up to 15 days.

Ingredients for the pasta

1 ½ cup organic pasta (boiled)

½ apple (sliced)

¼ cup purple cabbage (chopped)

Black olives, bread croutons, spring onion greens and grated parmesan cheese for garnish

Method: In a bowl mix together the salad dressing with all the above ingredients. Garnish and serve cold.

While at the store, I also ate…

Organic black olives and whole wheat bread sticks

Organic rice puff and whole wheat cracker, slathered with berry jam

Organic dark chocolate

Organic quinoa and lime salad


85 thoughts on “But naturally

    • That looks like a VERY tempting store with all those goodies!
      And a really interesting combination – prunes and lemongrass. Way to go! I think lemongrass is one of my favourite flavourings. It’s fairly easy to grow – if you have a sunny windowsill……
      I hope one day soom you get to wear your gumboots and garden 🙂 There really is nothing like it – snipping a few herbs, pulling a few carrots and some leaves. I have withdrawl symptoms at the moment as there are no seeds to sow!

      • Hey! I can’t wait to have my own garden. Until then, I’m just going to enjoy your images 😀 Once, I grew lemongrass in a small pot and used up everything just to make ONE glass of lemongrass cooler 😛

  1. I hope you have a space to grow too one day. i used to grow tomatoes on my balcony when I lived in a flat and some herbs, rosemary did well in a pot and chillis grow well indoors on a sunny windowsill. Your dressing sounds delicious, I am a big prune fan too !

  2. nom nom nom…this looks tasty! i’ll be stopping in from time to time to check things out, don’t worry i’ll wipe my feet at the door!! 😉

  3. This sounds so interesting. I’ve never tried anything like prune and lemongrass-dressed pasta–I’m going to need to try it!

    • Thank you, Liz. There wasn’t as much awareness, as there is now. The Farmer’s Market has decent stuff, but it’s not as grand as the ones you have in London or somewhere. There are a lot of little stores opening up everywhere, seems like it’s the future.

  4. Thank you for dropping by my site. Nice to have new readers. I’m all about food as well, so much in common. Also write a food column for the paper. As far as food straight from the garden, I’ve never found a tomato in the stores that can rival one of the vine. Susie

  5. Hey Celery, do you mind if I call you that? :). Sorry my comment was so lame yesterday. I was watching a football game. I should have just waited until I could properly respond. Oh well, here I am again.

    I too wish I could have a garden. It’s so cool to eat food you have grown. I hope you get to do that soon. I plan to start out with a small one next summer.

    As for organic food, I try to buy and eat it. I totally don’t like all the chemicals in my food.

    Your recipe was creative and yummy sounding as usual. I love prunes but have never cooked with them. Prunes have a very interesting consistency. Almost like a mix between raisins and olives. I will have to try your recipe.

    And for your treats at the store, were those just out as samples? Quite a spread! See you Celery! 🙂

    • Aww, your comment today is quite a spread! Those were some samples passing around the store, since it was also their launch afternoon.

      I can’t wait for my own garden. As of now I have some flowering plants, lemongrass, a bitter gourd vine, delicious smelling lemon plant, a custard apple plant and a little jamun tree (don’t think there is an English name for jamuns, purple berries). The fruit plants need to go soon, they need more space to bloom.

      Can’t wait to read about your summer garden 😀

  6. Im not sure about the prunes but love the rest. I have worked with carrot pasta in arrabiata sauce with fresh basil, but shall this one soon 🙂

  7. I know what you mean! I’d love to have my own herb garden 😀 so nice to have fresh vegetables you could pick still wet from the morning dew. Thanks for the paste recipe, it looks yam! ;D

  8. I’m really liking this pasta dish. I think I’ve made something similar but this looks much better then my attempt. I like the organic food concept you ave some great posts. Thanks for showing me your blog.

  9. That dressing is just genius! I don’t like sweet dressings much, but the prunes have been nicely balanced with the citrus, acid and spice. Super!

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