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Let the flavor of your homegrown vegetables take center stage. Making a sauce with starchy, pasta water is the real secret to light and creamy pasta. All you need is blanched vegetables (we love using blanched greens like spinach) and pasta.

  1. Wash your vegetables well then drop them in a pan of boiling water.
  2. Cook them until almost done; cooking time varies, so taste them to see.
  3. When almost done, take them out of the water, run cold water over them to stop the cooking and squeeze them dry, reserving some of the cooking water.
  4. When greens are cool, cut them or tear them into smaller pieces.
  5. Bring the water back to a boil.
  6. Add ½ finely diced peeled potato and some pasta (use a short pasta like penne, orecchiette or farfalle) and cook until about ¾ done.
  7. Reserve a cup of cooking water & drain the pasta.
  8. In a separate pan, cook some garlic in olive oil as above, add the red pepper flakes (optional), salt & pepper, and the greens cook, to meld the flavors.
  9. Add ½ cup of the reserved water. Turn the heat to high, bring to a boil, & add the pasta.
  10. Toss everything for a few minutes until most of the water has evaporated & the pasta finished cooking. You will be left with a bit of creamy sauce (the reason for the ½ potato).
  11. Add some good grated cheese and enjoy.