Saturday, September 6, 2014

Penne Pasta with Spinach Sauce

I'm not a big proponent of vegetables but this penne with spinach recipe I found on CookingChannelTV is one of my favorite dishes and I had to share it. It's super easy to make, it feeds a lot of people, and doesn't take much time to put together. Plus, if it's wicked hot outside, it doesn't require an oven so it won't turn you into a pool of sweat.

Here's what you'll need (and what I recommend):

1 box/pound of whole wheat penne pasta
3 garlic cloves
2 ounces of goat cheese
1 ounce of cream cheese
3/4 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon of pepper
6 ounces of spinach leaves
Parmesan cheese for topping (optional)

And while it's not listed, I recommend adding 1-2 ounces of pesto sauce!

Start by boiling your water for your pasta.

Once the water is boiling, add your pasta and let it cook for about 12 minutes.

While the pasta is cooking, prepare your other ingredients. If you have a food processor, add your garlic, goat cheese, cream cheese, salt, pepper, and half of your spinach and blend until it's smooth (if you have pesto, now would be the time to add it!). I don't have a food processor so I just chopped up the garlic and spinach by hand and then added everything into a bowl.

At this point, your pasta should be ready to be drained, however you will want to save a cup or so of your pasta water. You might need it later.

Put the other half of your spinach in a bowl and place your pasta on top.

Add the spinach sauce and toss to coat, adding enough of the pasta water to moisten (I ended up only using about a 1/4 cup). I find it helps to toss it by putting a bowl on top and shaking the two bowls. If that doesn't work, a wooden spoon will do the trick!

Add a little parmesan cheese and there you have it kids - a quick, delicious, and (somewhat) healthy meal you can put together in no time!

TOTAL COSTS: About $10
$1.49 for a box of whole wheat penne pasta
$.69 for garlic
$3.99 for 4 ounces of goat cheese
$.79 for 2 ounces of cream cheese
$.99 for salt
$1.99 for 8 ounce bag of spinach
Parmesan cheese and pepper already on hand

TOTAL AMOUNT OF TIME: Almost exactly 30 minutes

EASY-PEASY SCALE (1 super easy - 5 very difficult): 1 out of 5
You don't have to worry about burning, sautéing, brining, anything really technical. If you can boil water, you can make this dish!

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