Friday, February 5, 2010

Pasta with Spinach Sauce

I love spinach. I especially love it when it’s cooked and creamy with some kind of cheese. Of course, cheese makes everything better. So I decided the other night to make an all-time favorite – pasta with cheesy spinach sauce. I had planned on making enough to last several meals. What I had forgotten was how much fresh spinach shrinks down once cooked! So I made enough for dinner and lunch the next day. Whenever there are at least some leftovers, I feel my time cooking is validated.

This is yet again another vague recipe. I listed the amounts I used, but I usually base it on taste. It all depends on how much garlic you like, how thick or thin you want the sauce, what your sauce-to-pasta ratio is…

Pasta with Spinach Sauce:
2 tbsp butter
9 oz fresh baby spinach (I picked off all of the stems – probably isn’t really necessary for you to do this)
2 cubes crushed garlic (I used frozen cubes of crushed garlic – 2 cloves would substitute)
¼ - ½ cup milk (I used whole milk leftover from the cinnamon raisin bread)
3 wedges laughing cow cheese (light garlic & herb)
2-3 tbsp flour
1 cup whole wheat rotini
Freshly ground black pepper
Parmigiano Reggiano

Melt butter over medium-low heat in a medium saucepan or pot. Add the spinach. If your pan/pot isn’t big enough to hold all of the spinach at once, add a little at a time. It will wilt down once cooked, so you’ll eventually be able to fit it all in. In the meantime, boil salted water and cook the pasta. When the spinach is almost entirely wilted, add the crushed garlic and milk. I like adding a little milk at a time, and adding more later if I think the sauce needs to be thinner. Add the laughing cow cheese, mushing (a technical term) it into the sauce. Add the flour and continue stirring. Once the sauce is at your desired consistency (and flavor – taste and add ingredients to your liking), stir in the pasta. Serve with black pepper and some freshly grated cheese.

This recipe can easily be doubled, tripled, etc. It depends on how many people you are cooking for, and in my case, how much fresh spinach you have!

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