Tuesday, February 12, 2008
One of the really cool activities at the Sheraton Vistana Resort is what they call the "Florida Market". Once a week they invite artisans and vendors to come and sell their wares in a farmer's market type of setting on the resort property. There are many local artisans there selling everything from nesting dolls to knitted scarves to quilted bags to African woodcrafts. There are also vendors selling homemade jams, jellies, salsas, and such. But the best vendor of all, in our opinion, was a woman selling all-natural pastas, raviolis, and orzo. She was a vendor for Pappardelle's Pasta Company, based in Denver, which only sells its product through farmers and specialty markets, and on the internet. She allowed us to sample what she had available, which was only a fraction of what the company sells on-line. Some of our favorites were the dark chocolate linguini, the fanciful fruit blend (raspberry, tangerine, lemon and lime) and the sweet potato orzo. The first two are actually dessert pastas--a new concept for me. The vendor shared a recent issue of a gourmet food magazine in which Pappardelle's was featured, and told us that the website was full of recipes that featured their pastas, as well as Bella Sol oils and vinegars which complement the pasta well. We ended up purchasing two kinds of frozen ravioli to fix the next night (smoked mozzarella and spicy coastal crab...yum!) and the chocolate linguini, fruit blend, and tomato cracked pepper pastas to bring home. Well, tonight for dinner we had the tomato cracked pepper flat pasta (it's really wide...I forget the technical term!) with marinara sauce and steamed broccoli. As soon as the pasta hit the boiling water I could smell the pepper. With only 160 calories a serving and .5 grams of fat, this pasta was not only super tasty, but super healthy, as well. And an added bonus was it only had 20 grams of sodium--that is so hard to find in yummy foods I'm finding out! So, we will be placing an order in the near future for some of their other unique flavors of pasta, and, if you are a pasta lover and enjoy all-natural foods, you might want to check them out, too. I've never tasted anything quite like it!