Thinking back on my childhood days, I can recall one of my most favorite, easy, staple dishes which was noodles and butter. The simplicity of these two ingredients go perfectly together. Once in a while, I would even add a touch of salt. There is nothing … Continue reading
Tag Archives: Pasta
Sometimes, making spaghetti sauce is when I open the pantry door and throw in anything and everything I can find. Spices, vegetables, canned pumpkin, cream, you name it but I always seem to go back to this very simple recipe. … Continue reading
Pasta with Spinach in a Tarragon Chickpea Sauce
Oh my word. I love chickpeas. Love. I don’t know why they are so comforting for me but I absolutely love them. My poor husband, who never does the grocery shopping, volunteered to go with my three-year old son. What I thought was an easy list, ended up being a three-hour tour in the grocery store! One of the items that threw him off was “Chickpeas.” I probably should have mentioned they are AKA garbanzo beans….oops. Although I did write, “International Aisle” next to the word, I put him on a while goose chase. While I was bored at the house, I decided to clean out my pantry and realized, I have FOUR cans of beans! By the time, he called and said, “I finally found them!” I didn’t want to disappoint his hard work so I thanked him and used them in a recipe today. My pantry is now filled with garbanzo beans (and I love that!)
So what to make with these little fellows? Spiced chickpeas? Hummus? Nah… let’s go for something different, let’s reach for the stars and make a creamy sauce! What a true winner but don’t take my word, make it yourself!
- 1/2 pound of spaghetti
- 4 cups fresh spinach
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1/2 pint of heavy whipping cream
- 1 can (15 oz) Garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 Tbs tarragon (more to garnish)
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
- Salt and Pepper
1. Add water to a large sauce pan for your spaghetti noodles.
2. Melt butter over low in a separate saucepan for the sauce (move that baby around to get it to melt and YES that’s some mmhmmm lots of butter!)
3. Add garlic and chickpeas to the butter
4. Season with pepper (I didn’t use salt because the beans have enough in them. Use your judgement. I’m not a big salt fan.)
5. Add heavy whipping cream and tarragon and stir.
6. Turn heat to medium-high and bring to a boil.
7. Turn heat to low and cover for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
8. Meanwhile, add spaghetti noodles to the boiling water. Cook pasta according to directions.
9. When your sauce pan has reached ten minutes, stir in Parmesan cheese and turn the heat off. Cover and let rest. (It will thicken)
9. It should look like this when sauce is finished:
10. Either use an immersion blender or a food processor to turn into a smooth consistency. Place lid on top to keep warm.
11. When pasta is finished cooking, add spinach to the water. The spinach will start to wilt. Drain the pasta.
12. Mix the sauce with the pasta to combine. Serve with extra Parmesan cheese or garnish with tarragon.
Pass the Pesto Pasta Peas!
Carbs are a wonderful downfall of mine. I love them. Let’s not mistake the word LOVE, I truly, truly, truly love them! I try to make pasta once a week – sometimes with a red sauce, sometimes a white, sometimes with mushrooms, sometimes with broccoli, sometimes with beef, sometimes with chicken, it all depends.
One of my all time favorites, Pesto Pasta, reminds me of when I worked in Towson. There was (and may still be) a shop on Chesapeake Avenue which had beautiful salads and pastas. Once I tried their pesto pasta, there was no turning back. I had to make my own. Pesto is fantastic on sandwiches, pizzas and of course, pasta! The pine nuts give it a nice flavor with garlic that just calls “home” in your mouth. Basil is so refreshing who can resist the smell? Pour in some Parmesan and we just made the choir sing. One of my favorite family recipes of all time. My twist on this favorite is that I add peas. They are vibrant in color and have just the right amount of sugar to add to this dish.
Leaves from 2 bunches of fresh basil plants
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan-Reggiano or Romano cheese
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup pine nuts
2 medium-sized garlic cloves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/2 pound angel hair pasta (capallini)
3/4 cup frozen peas, thawed
1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil for the pasta.
2. Meanwhile, combine the pine nuts and basil in a food processor. Pulse a few times.
3. Add garlic, pulse a few more times.
4. While the food processor is on, slowly pour in the olive oil in a constant stream. Stop to scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula.
5. Add freshly grated Parmesan cheese and pulse again.
6. Add salt and pepper to taste.
7. Make the pasta in the salted boiling water until al dente. (About four minutes).
8. While the pasta is cooking, put the peas in the bottom of a large bowl.
9. Drain the pasta. Transfer the pasta, to the large bowl covering the peas. Do not mix.
10. Add the pesto on top of the pasta and peas mixture. Toss the mixture together.
11. Transfer to bowls, top with extra pine nuts and Parmesan cheese.
Presto! You have Pesto Pasta with Peas!