FOODIE: Whole Wheat Pasta with Chickpeas and Escarole

Hey ladies and welcome to another edition of Steely D’s AdventuresInCooking!
I’m still on my cooking kick, trying to make sure that all of my food doesn’t taste the same AND doesn’t kill my budget. This week I tried out a wheat pasta, chickpeas and escarole recipe out on JBakes and her dog, Miko. OK, so we didn’t actually feed it to Miko, but he liked the smell! Lol…only tips I’d say, add in maybe twice the pasta – so four cups – because with two, you barely recognize there’s any pasta in the dish. Plus, I added maybe about a cup of crushed tomatoes with Italian herbs instead of the regular stewed tomato reserve the recipe asked for, it was a happy mistake because it tasted great! =0)

ps. I had to ask an older lady in the market what escarole looked like…it looked like the spinach right next to it and I couldn’t be sure! I’m sure she’s cracking on me at the AARP clubhouse right now…lol.

Recipe after the jump!


  • 2 cups whole-grain penne
  • 1 head escarole, roughly chopped
  • 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more to taste
  • 1/4 cup capers, drained and patted dry (optional)
  • 5 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 1/2 cup roughly chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 28-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes, crushed slightly,
  • liquid reserved
  • 1 15.5-ounce can chickpeas, drained, rinsed and patted dry
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese, plus more for garnish


Cook the pasta according to the package directions; add the escarole during the last 2 minutes, cover and do not stir. Remove the escarole with tongs; set aside. Drain the pasta, reserving 1/2 cup cooking liquid. Meanwhile, if you’re using capers, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the capers and fry until crisp, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate.

Add the remaining 3 tablespoons oil to the skillet. Cook the garlic, parsley and red pepper flakes until the garlic toasts slightly, 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, chickpeas, a pinch of salt and the bay leaves. Cook until the tomatoes and chickpeas brown, about 6 minutes. Add the escarole and reserved tomato juice and cook until the sauce thickens slightly, about 4 more minutes. Remove and discard the bay leaves.

Add the cooked pasta to the skillet and toss with the sauce; season with salt and pepper. (If the sauce is thick, add some reserved pasta water.) Stir in the cheese and top with fried capers, if using, and more cheese.

Click here to check out the rest of Parlour’s FOODIE recipes, then tell us how yours turns out!


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