We recently wrote about the Catelli Smart line of pastas—penne, vermicelli, and fettuccine. The Smart line, with twice as much fibre as their regular white pasta lines, is increasingly popular and being consumed by families on the go that prioritize nutrition, and keep an eye on their family’s bottom line. We sent some samples out across Canada to mothers with young families. A voice we were eager to hear was Malindi Elmore’s, two-time Olympian and Canada’s second-fastest marathon finisher.
Currently training to qualify for the 2024 Olympics, Elmore said that pasta night is always a hit with her family, and both she and her children loved the Catelli Smart Fettuccine.
“No one noticed the extra fibre, and we often eat whole wheat pasta,” said Elmore, who finished ninth the last time she raced in the Olympics on the world stage. Elmore, hailing from Kelowna, British Columbia, said the pasta cooked and tasted as expected, much to her delight. “I would tell people to eat it because we do and we love it,” she said with a laugh, adding: “We just ate it with a homemade Bolognese sauce, and it was great.”
Elmore perhaps pays more attention to her diet than the rest of us—she has more at stake, even if choosing to live a normal life is a cornerstone to her success—but all mothers care about serving their families healthy and affordable dinners and lunches.
Another running mom famously in the public eye is Jessica Shaw, pictured up top, a Toronto-based athlete sponsored by Brooks running, a middle-distance runner, and the coach of her elementary school’s cross-country team. Shaw tried the penne pasta and made a terrific recipe for Vegan pasta pizza, adding that the extra fibre didn’t compromise taste.
“I didn’t find it cooked or tasted different, which was amazing!” she said. “Such a great added bonus and taste wasn’t compromised!”
This is the Jessica Shaw Vegan Pasta Penne Recipe:
- Cook your Catelli penne Smart Pasta following the box’s instructions
- Prep your pizza toppings: broccoli, olives, mushrooms, etc.
- Mix your cheese sauce with your pasta in a pan.
- Spread pizza sauce on top of your pasta and add pizza toppings.
- Sprinkle with Vegan cheese.
To make the cheese sauce, Shaw says:
- Add 1 can of white kidney beans.
- Mix with 1 cup of plant milk.
- Add 2/3 of a cup of nutritional yeast.
- And 2/3 of a teaspoon of salt.
- Add a tablespoon of olive, and a pinch of garlic powder.
Shaw said she would happily recommend the Catelli Smart products to other mothers who are active and lead busy lives. Curious to see if the trend would hold, we sent some Catelli Smart spaghetti to Stephanie McGregor in Vancouver, a physiotherapist who runs Myodetox, and whose tagline is: “Future-proof your body.”
We were curious to hear what a BC-based health expert might make of the product.
“Tastes the same as regular spaghetti!” she said. “You would never know there’s extra fibre in it—it cooked the same, tastes the same, and, most importantly, my son gobbled it up.”
The final athlete we wanted to hear from is Sarah Strehler, a runner in Toronto who’s active with BlackToe Running, a new mother and a recent first-time marathon finisher. Strehler says she’s looking for any edge in the kitchen she can find.
“We eat very healthily in our house, so finding quality foods is important,” she said. “Fibre is something I sometimes lack when running because the leafy greens upset my stomach. This was a good way to get some fibre without hurting my tummy on runs the next day.”
Would you recommend the Catelli Smart pasta? “Absolutely I would for sure recommend it,” she said. “I would tell people it literally looks, cooks, and tastes like normal, delicious pasta—with some important benefits! Fibre is way more challenging to get enough of than people realize, so fortified foods that look, taste, and cook the same is important. Especially when so many other high-fibre foods are known for getting “mushy.”
Strehler made Carbonara with Fettuccine and added chicken, bacon, asparagus and mushrooms. She added that she thinks the Catelli Smart pasta would work well as a cold summertime pasta and was excited about using the product to make her famous meatballs and spaghetti.
“My husband and I both run and the whole household is active,” she said. “I think the Catelli Smart products are delicious and nutritious. I’ll definitely be serving them up to our family again.”
For more on Catelli Smart pasta, please click here.
Photograph of Malindi Elmore by Todd Fraser/Canada Running Series.