Gluten-Free Kale and Sausage Pasta

IMG_3461Since January rolled around, I’ve been making a conscious effort to eat less wheat-based products. In January, I gave up deep-fried foods and have only had them a few times since then. In February, I gave up all bread (pizza included – it was so hard!) but felt so much better. I ate pizza on the last night of February, and just didn’t feel great the next day. In March, I’m looking to give up all gluten to see how my body reacts. So far, so good.

One thing that has been really hard is pasta. I love to cook Italian food, and so this once-a-week-staple has become a daily daydream. I tried my hand at gluten free pasta and noticed a few things. This was brown rice pasta, and it was a bit chewier than regular pasta (but not in a good way). It held up to strong ingredients like kale and sausage, but after a couple days sitting in sauce, was way too mushy to eat. So, I would definitely suggest having this one fresh rather than having it left over. I’ve only had gluten-free pasta once since the beginning of the month, and have instead been reaching for lots of fresh veggies and protein, so I will make sure to include some more recipes throughout the month.

If you’re looking for a pasta that’s healthier, I would definitely recommend trying this. There are endless variations, too! And, who are we kidding? Have this with regular pasta if you’d like!

Gluten-Free Pasta with Kale and Sausage
Serves 4 as a Primi Course

400g gluten free pasta (I chose brown rice pasta)
2 sausages, removed from their casing (I used hot Italian pork sausage, but any could work)
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp red chili flakes
4 cloves of garlic, smashed
1 bunch of kale, stems removed and chopped coarsely
freshly grated parmesan
salt and pepper to taste

1. Boil water.
2. In the meantime, heat oil in a frying pan over medium heat.
3. Add sausage, breaking up the bits until it is cooked through (about 12 minutes).
4. Add garlic, kale and chili flakes. Stir. Cover for about 5 minutes until kale is wilted.
5. Cook pasta to desired al dente. Reserve a cup of pasta water.
6. When kale is cooked through, add pasta to frying pan, and add a bit of pasta water to create a sauce.
7. Salt and pepper to taste.
8. Serve immediately with freshly grated parmesan (and a glass of Chianti).

Have a great day!

Where To Eat Tonight: Don Francesco’s

Last night I was treated to an incredible meal at Don Francesco’s in Vancouver. Those who live in Vancouver surely know of the established restaurant. It is Italian fine dining at its best. Warm, inviting room, live music, fabulous wines, and of course, a delicious menu. The meal blew me away. I can’t wait to go back for special occasions and dinner dates. IMG_3055IMG_3056

Right on Burrard near Robson, it’s the perfect downtown location for a date night. Walk around later and grab some roasted chestnuts off the street near the Vancouver Art Gallery.


We had a funny conversation about kale at the table. It happens to be one of my favourite foods, but others are not so inclined. I was quick to share my kale chips recipe, sure to convince any non-kale lover of its attributes. The salad was amazing. I felt great about eating it due to the generous portion of kale, but there was a nice side of burrata and tomato to even things out.


When you order rack of lamb at restaurants, you usually expect a few chops here and there. This was the real deal. Beautifully cooked, tender lamb atop potatoes, white & green asparagus, and fresh carrots. It was wrapped in a parmesan crisp and topped with lamb jus. Truly unforgettable.


The dessert was, in a word, fantastic. It was so hard to choose my favourite, so I won’t. From left to right you have Tiramisu (so delicious), Chocolate Ganache Cake (so rich and smooth), and Creme Brûlée (a perfect version if you ask me).

I would sum up our night by saying this: I will definitely be back.

Happy weekend!