Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Pasta with Spinach, Pepper, and Pecorino Romano

A creamy pasta with spinach and pizazz...This is a tried and true10 minute meal! Super fast, simple, and so very delicious!   It might not be the lightest thing I've made in these past few weeks, but I'm sure I could play around with it to create a lighter version.  My version had too much pepper and not enough spinach, so the recipe below reflects how I would make it NEXT time.  Either way, this is so yummy!!! Plus, you can make it as mild or as spicy as you would like.  This is most definitely going on my regular rotation as a quick "go to" meal.  I hope you all like it as much as we did!!!

Happy Cooking!

Pasta with Spinach, Pepper, and Pecorino Romano
based on
1 lb fusilli (I used rotini) pasta
2 T olive oil
2 cloves garlic, lightly crushed
2 pkgs baby spinach leaves (10 ounces), chopped
1-3 tsp ground pepper, depending on how spicy you like things (remember you can always add more, but can never take the spice away)
salt to taste
1 1/2 cups grated Pecorino Romano cheese (6 ounces)
1 cup mascarpone cheese (8 ounces), at room temperature

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender but still firm to the bite, 8 to 10 minutes. Reserve 3/4 cup of the cooking liquid, then drain the pasta.  I did this while making the sauce so that everything was ready in 10 minutes or less...the sauce takes less than that really.

Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large, high-sided skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook until lightly browned, about 1-2 minutes.  Be very careful during this step - do not allow the garlic to burn or it will leave a bitter taste in the oil.  Once lightly browned, remove the garlic and discard. Add the chopped spinach and 1 teaspoon pepper, and cook until the spinach has wilted, about 1 minute.

Remove the skillet from the heat and add the pasta. Add the Pecorino Romano cheese, 1/2 tsp salt and toss until coated.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the reserved cooking liquid and the mascarpone cheese until smooth. 
Pour over the pasta and toss until coated. Season with salt and any additional pepper to taste.  Again, be careful with the pepper.  You can always add more.  This is so simple and delicious!  Enjoy!!!

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