Sunday, January 24, 2010

Spinach with Rotini, Beans and Asiago Cheese

To be honest, right now I'm pretty glad the only part of my life you can see is the food. Because while you wouldn't know it to look at this blog, things have fallen apart around here on a pretty massive scale. Last weekend Dexter (seen below)had to go to the emergency room where it was determined that he'd eaten something he's not supposed to and would need surgery to remove it. He spent two nights at the veterinary hospital and then came home, quite a bit worse for the wear. Then, I managed to get a bit of a stomach bug, which was not helped by the anxiety over Dexter's well being. So basically, Dexter looks a mess, I look a mess, the apartment is truly shameful and we've eaten almost nothing that would pass for real food for about a week.

Luckily, things are finally on the mend and last night I managed to try out that Cooking Light pasta recipe I'd planned to make last week. First reaction - oh my STARS that is a lot of spinach. Seriously, look at that photo. How can you call that pasta with spinach? It is clearly spinach, with a bit of pasta. Truth be told, I didn't even make the recipe exactly. Nope. I messed with it. Know what I did? I made HALF the spinach they called for. HALF. Reflect on that for a moment.

But. The dish was truly delicious. Even with that much spinach. Ryan said maybe it would like some tomatoes (N.B. Ryan thinks every pasta dish would improve with tomatoes). But I loved it and would gladly make it again.

adapted from Cooking Light (also, probably not "light" anymore)

1/2 bag of spinach, washed, dried and roughly chopped
1/2 lb of rotini or other spiral pasta
3-4 T extra virgin olive oil (originally it only called for 2 T)
1 can cannellini beans rinsed and drained
2 garlic cloves, smashed
1/2 C shredded Asiago cheese
salt and pepper (I add more salt than Cooking Light would ever sanction).

Get your water on for your pasta. While you're waiting for it to boil, drain and rinse the beans and set aside, grate the Asiago cheese and clean dry and chop your spinach. When the water boils, add your pasta and cook according to the box directions (about 8-10 minutes for rotini probably). In a large saucepan, add 2 T of olive oil and the smashed garlic, cook for 2-3 minutes. The garlic will get golden in color but it's not really cooked through. Add the beans and a pinch of salt and cook on very, very low heat. You just want the beans getting a nice garlic flavor, you don't really need to be cooking them. When the pasta is done, drain it and then toss it in with the beans. If you don't want the garlic chunks in your meal you can pick them out now. Stir carefully (you don't want mushed beans). Then add the spinach. Give it a nice sprinkling of salt and add the other 2 T of olive oil. Turn it slowly and carefully. The spinach will start to wilt. When the spinach has melted down enough to be manageable (maybe 1-2 minutes) add the cheese and mix once more. That's it! Super fast and tasty!


mom said...

Ah, I have been waiting for you to try this recipe and tell me whether or not it met your standards. I love the sound of this, although in our house it would not pass dinner muster with your father (no meat), but it sure would make a nice little lunch for a week! To be sure, I asked him if he would consider this for dinner and he said "no, it is not a dinner; it is a salad." There was an adjective before salad which I will spare both you and your readers. I rest my case. I am the closet vegetarian. He is not.

Sarah said...

Oh, wow, this looks FANTASTIC. Lots of spinach, yes, but gorgeous.

I always end up "de-lightening" Cooking Light recipes, too.

And p.s. your dad cracks me up!


Related Posts with Thumbnails