I have been sick for about three weeks with a slow moving head cold. It has been the month of the stuffy nose for me. And when you can’t smell well, you can’t taste much either, as I’m sure you know. As a result, I pretty much lost my appetite for a few weeks, but when I did decide that I wanted to eat I had an odd craving for white food. Chicken noodle soup, pasta, yogurt, toast – they were all major components of my virus-induced diet.

Now that I’m finally on the mend, with the help of some antibiotics, I’m craving healthy foods like greens and colorful veggies. It’s one of those things where I’m listening to my body and it’s telling me it needs some good, nutritious food. Still, I wanted to share one of my favorite recipes, whether I’m sick or not. It’s one of those white foods, but it is very tasty and customizable to whatever you like. Pasta with bread crumbs might sound odd if you have never had tried it before, but trust me, the silky pasta highlighted with crunchy, buttery crumbs is a sublime pairing. It’s also quick, easy and I bet you have all of the ingredients in your pantry. This is the perfect meal for days when you are busy, but suddenly realize you are  hungry and have no idea what to cook.

What kind of foods do you eat when you’re sick or too busy to spend much time cooking?

White On White Pasta
Serves: 1
  • 1 serving of dried pasta - whatever you have on hand (anything from egg noodles to rotini will work)
  • Butter
  • At least ¼ cup of crumbs - fresh bread crumbs, panko, seasoned bread crumbs, or even cracker crumbs
  • Optional seasonings- hot pepper flakes, capers, chopped olives, herb seasoning blend, grated Parmesan cheese
  1. Cook pasta according to directions. Replacing the water with broth or adding a bouillon cube to the water adds a lot of flavor. If I don't have either of those I use seasoning salt, instead of plain salt, in the water. While the pasta cooks melt a pat of butter in a small skillet over medium heat. When the butter is bubbly, add the crumbs. I always keep dried, seasoned bread crumbs in my cupboard, but you can use panko or fresh crumbs. Crushed cracker crumbs also work well. Toast the crumbs in the butter. Add any seasonings, like an Italian herb blend or red pepper flakes, to the crumbs. When the pasta is done, drain well and put in a bowl. Top with a bit more butter, if you'd like, then sprinkle with toasted crumbs.
  2. Quick and easy version: Cook your pasta. When it is drained top with a pat of butter and a handful of crushed Ritz crackers. Season with salt and pepper.

This post is part of Weekend Cooking at Beth Fish Reads

26 thoughts on “White On White Pasta

  1. Oh, Janel. That’s awful. I hope you are on your way to feeling better soon. I feel your pain. These head colds/sinus infections are taking such a long time to clear up.

    Regarding cravings while I am sick, mine is noodles of any sort. I wish I craved vegetables, but, alas…

    1. I am feeling better, Karen. I think noodles is a common craving when we aren’t feeling well. Nice and soft, warm comfort for a sore throat.

  2. Your noodle dish looks great and that’s the kind of carby comfort food you need when on the mend. I like soup quite a bit as it’s easy on the sore throat (if you have one). Hope you are better now and staying warm!!

    1. My husband and daughter made chicken noodle soup for me when I was feeling the worst. I was sad that my nose was so stuffed up I couldn’t taste anything!

    1. I like that you can make it as bold or mild as you want by adjusting the spices and add-ins. Whatever suits your mood.

    1. I’ve never tried tomatoes in mac & cheese, but I’m sure it’s a good. A bit of acid to cut some of the cheesy richness.

  3. Glad you’re on the road to recovery! I’ve been under the weather this week, too, and have eaten mostly soup. This sounds (and looks) delicious!

    1. Soup really helps make you feel better when you’re sick, especially with a cold. All of that warm steam is wonderful!

    1. I’ve seen versions of this using anchovies and even sardines, but I haven’t tried those. Yet. 🙂

  4. Looks like those carbs helped you get better. I can totally see combining bread crumbs with pasta. Always top my mac and cheese with bread crumbs, so . . .

    My go to comfort food when I’m not feeling well is soup. Easiest to eat. 🙂

    1. Oh yes, bread crumbs on mac and cheese is fabulous. We went to a BBQ place a few months ago and they topped their mac & cheese with crushed Cheez-Its. Yummy!

  5. My quick go to recipe is Homemade fettuccine alfredo! Simple, simple simple! Butter, cream, pasta and Parmesan cheese. Your recipe looks yummy too! Will try it soon.

    1. Your recipe is also a great pantry recipe. You just don’t feel like shopping for much when you’re sick!

    1. You’re the second person that has mentioned Mrs. Grass’s soup in the past week. I think I need to get some, for nostalgic reasons. 🙂

  6. I’m glad you’re getting better. This recipe sounds ideal for when I get in from a long day out and don’t feel like doing anything too elaborate. Thanks.

    1. It is very quick. I’d say on average it takes about 15 minutes, depending on how long your pasta needs to cook.

  7. Your pasta sounds delicious – I would be adding the olives and red pepper flakes for sure. I haven’t been sick in over ten years (knock on wood) so I’m not sure what I’d eat if I were.

    1. I still seem to be getting at least one cold per winter and this one was a whopper! I used Kalamatas and Aleppo pepper in the pasta in the picture. So good!

  8. Glad to hear you’re so much better by now, Janel!

    This dish is something my mom makes a lot, for herself though as I don’t particularly like it. I usually make some pasta sauce for myself.

    1. I think maybe some of my son’s food preferences are transferring to me. He eats spaghetti without sauce, just sausage and cheese. This is a similar thing, although he wouldn’t eat it, LOL!

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