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Pasta Con Le Sarde #HungerActionMonth #SNAPChallenge


Next month several bloggers are tackling the challenge of creating nutritious meals that stay within the budgetary constraints of what a family of four receives on Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) which is $5.53 or $16.60 for the day. Yes, really. Challenge accepted.

For my first attempt at the challenge, I made Frugal Tuna Pasta with Roasted Brussels Sprouts that rang in at total of $5.13. With some of those leftover ingredients - the pasta and the sauce - I created a second recipe with canned sardines as my protein and a tossed green salad as the side dish.

can of sardines, cost $1.29
pasta, package serves 8, so I used half (will use for another meal), cost $0.89 = $0.45
marinara sauce, used half (will use for another meal), cost $1.99 = $1.00
parmesan cheese, used one-third, cost $2.35 = $0.78
olive oil for pasta, cost negligible = $0.25
salt and pepper, cost negligible = $0.05
mixed salad greens, used one-third, cost $2.99 = $1.00
olive oil for salad dressing, cost negligible = $0.25
vinegar for salad dressing, cost negligible = $0.25
Total = $5.32


Pasta Con Le Sarde

Ingredients
  • olive oil
  • 1 can sardines
  • 1 package pasta, only used half since package served 8
  • 1 jar pasta sauce, only used half
  • water
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • grated parmesan for serving

Procedure
Cook pasta according to package directions. Set aside.

In a large skillet, heat a splash of olive oil. Add in 1 C pasta sauce and 1/2 C water. Bring to a simmer.


Give the pasta a rinse so it isn't sticking together and turn into the sauce. Stir to coat the pasta completely and add a glug of olive oil make it glossy. Season to taste with salt and pepper, as needed. To serve, place pasta in individual serving bowls and sprinkle with grated parmesan cheese. Top with sardines. Serve immediately.

Thoughts
As with my previous pasta dinner, there was no room for extras in this dish. Typically when I make this pasta, I stir in saffron to the sauce and add an onion. I elected to skip the aromatic onion and add in some cheese.

As a side dish, I made a green salad with only greens. Usually my salads would have sliced tomatoes or fresh cucumbers or even shredded carrots. To say within the budget, it was just greens tossed with olive oil and vinegar. It's plain and without frills. But it was plenty filling...with a protein, a carb, and a green. I think this definitely qualifies as a nutritious dinner for four within a SNAP allotment.

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