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Spaghetti with Bean Balls

The weather outside is not pleasing at all, and our heart is screaming for some warming meals!

Today I'm sharing an easy, warming recipe perfect for week evenings, and the recipe is for Spaghetti with Bean Balls :)

It's such a delicious bowl of spaghetti with warming tomato-parsley sauce and protein-filled beanballs to make the meal more balanced.

Grab the recipe along with the history of pasta ;)

1. Pasta was first made in China, not Italy

Shocked, right? While pasta is pretty much synonymous with Italian cuisine, in fact the first recorded reports of pasta being eaten actually come from China.

Those reports go all the way back to 5,000 BC.

In fact, legend says that Marco Polo, the famous Venetian explorer, actually introduced noodles to Italy sometime in the 12th century. However, historical records show that pasta was already eaten in Italy by 500 BC.

Still, that’s 4500 years after China.

2. The many, many shapes of pasta

How many shapes of pasta do you think there are? 5? 10? 25?

How about 600? Yep, that’s right. This is one of the least known facts about pasta.

There are 600 official pasta shapes produced throughout the world. At least, that’s according to the International Pasta Organization, which was founded to help increase awareness and consumption of pasta.

Here’s a great list of many different types of pasta.

3. American pasta, brought by Jefferson

Many people assume that pasta probably came on the boats with the Italian immigrants seeking new opportunities in the New Land. That would be around 1890 – 1914.

However, the actual introduction of pasta to the new American audience happened long before that. About 100 years before that, to be exact.

It was in fact Thomas Jefferson – yes, the 3rd US President – who introduced Americans to the delicious food all the way back in the 18th century.

4. No tomato sauce until much later

You can probably put 2 and 2 together and figure this one out if you know about the history of tomatoes in Europe. That’s because tomatoes weren’t brought to Europe until 1519, when Cortez, the Spanish explorer, brought the red fruit from Mexico.

Before then, pasta was eaten without tomato sauce. But after that, pasta and tomato sauce became a match made in heaven.

5. After Italy, the country that consumes the most pasta is…

America? The UK?

Many people would assume it’s one of those countries listed, as we certainly do have a love for pasta, but they’d be dead wrong.

In fact, you’d have to go further south for the #2 – Venezuela. That’s right – according to the International Pasta Organization’s data, Venezuelans eat 12.3 kg of pasta per year (per capita), putting them at #2.

The #3 spot goes to Tunisians, who eat 11.9 kg of pasta per year.

6. Italians eat a lot of pasta

Yes, Italians eat the most pasta per capita per year of any population in the world. But exactly how much is that?

That would be 26 kg per person per year. If you’re not too familiar with kilograms, that’s a whole lot – almost 60 pounds!

To put it in other terms, if Italians at the same yearly amount in spaghetti shape, that’d be enough pasta to wrap around the planet 15,000 times.

That’s a lot of pasta.

You should also try out Jonny’s amazing spaghetti and meatballs made from scratch

7. The favorite American pastas are…

The first one should be no surprise – spaghetti! The 2013 Barilla World Pasta Day survey showed that Americans love spaghetti above all other pasta varieties.

The second place goes to penne, and the third most loved pasta variety in the US is rotini.

8. ‘Pasta’ means different things in different languages

While the word ‘pasta’ may seem pretty much international at this point, there are actually differences in meaning for the word depending on what language you’re using.

For example, in Latin, pasta means “dough pastry cake,” while in Greek it means “barley porride.” That last one doesn’t sound so good.

In Italian, however, pasta actually means “paste,” which is logical, as that’s the way that pasta is made, by making a paste of water and flour and other things like olive oil and eggs.

9. Pasta will make you happy

Pasta makes most people happy, because it’s a delicious food that can be prepared in many ways.

However, according to science, pasta can actually make you happy on a deeper level. That’s because there are lots of carbohydrates in pasta.

These carbs will up the amount of serotonin in the body, which many scientists belive will bring about feelings of happiness and well-being.

10. 600 varieties of pasta – and more than 1300 different names

What’s in a name? Believe it or not, while there are more than 600 different shapes of pasta, there are actually more than 1300 names for them.

This is because, depending on what region you find yourself in, one pasta can have many different names.  There are differences in names for pasta based on the city and country.

11. Pasta was originally eaten by hand

Yep, this kind of makes sense when you think about it, especially considering the fact that sauces came later.

Originally, people ate pasta with their hands. After all, it would be much easier to grab and enjoy it.

However, when sauces were introduced with pasta, especially tomato sauce, it became very difficult to eat it by hand without having to change clothes many times a day.

Therefore, cutlery was added to the Italian table – first in high class culture, then becoming ubiquitous throughout the land.

12. Pasta – for pets?

Pasta is believed to be very beneficial for dogs and cats, as it can help their growth development and provide them with beautiful, healthy and glossy coats.

In fact, this is the reason why pasta is included in so many pet food products.

Of course, while pasta can be great for your cats and dogs from time to time, it isn’t recommended to give it to them too frequently. *source

And now it's time to jump straight to the recipe!

Prep: 20 min

Cook time: 20 min

Level: medium

Servings: 2 huge portions

Calories per serving: 608 kcal

Find the recipe & nutrition facts below :


  • 1/2 packet of pasta

  • salt and pepper to taste

For the tomato sauce:

  • 1 tbsp oil

  • 1 large onion (chopped)

  • 2 cloves of garlic (chopped)

  • 1/2 cup tomato paste

  • 1/2 cup water (if the paste is thick)

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 2 tsp sugar

  • 2 tbsp fresh parsley

For the beanballs:

  • 1 large onion

  • 2-3 pieces of broccoli

  • 1 can of black beans (400gr.)

  • 1/2 cup chickpea flour

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 1 tsp garlic

  • 1/2 tsp savory

  • 1/2 tsp cumin

  • 1/2 tsp paprika

  • 1/2 tsp black pepper


Step 1: In a wide frying pan(wok pan) on medium heat with oil fry onion for around 5-7 minutes and add chopped garlic and fry for another few minutes. Add in tomato paste, water, salt, and sugar. Fry for another 3-5 minutes, turn off the heat and stir in fresh parsley.

Step 2: In a food processor add in all of the ingredients for beanballs and blend until well combined. Form small balls and fry in a little amount of oil for 3 min. on each side.

Step 3: For the spaghetti and them in boiling water with salt and cook according to instructions.

Step 4: Serve with a glass of wine.



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