Monday, December 14, 2009

Kitchen Sink Farfalle: Easy Tastes Amazing

Confession: Most of the foodstuffs that end up posted here are from weekends. And that's only partially because I hate taking photos without natural light. The truth of it is that I'm not always eating things I want to take pictures of. Like thawed soup. Or scrambled eggs with leftover vegetables. Or sushi (my singular take-out vice). I cook most nights and man alive, I do enjoy it, but please don't think it's five ways to fancypants every night around here. Not that you did in the first place. But maybe. Suspension of disbelief.

Something that has been immensely helpful in my motivations is the presence of dining companions. Jaimeson and I switch off on dinner duties and when he's not here, I have Molly. As it stands, I have tried out today's highlighted foodstuff on both of them. On weeknights. Fancy-free.

Look at that. Lots of stuff. Specifically, say it with me, everything but the kitchen sink. I doubt that I'm the first person to try the combination out but it was new to me and it's an official standby now.

First things first, remove the following from your freezer:
  • Bulk bag of pine nuts (can be pricey but totally manageable from Costco)
  • Bag of frozen peas
From your fridge:
  • 1/2 link Smoked turkey sausage or kielbasa (frequently buy 1, get 1 at my Jewel)
  • Fresh spinach (I always have this. Always.)
  • 1/3 cup Low fat ricotta cheese
  • Shredded parmesan
From your pantry:
  • Farfalle or Bowtie pasta
  • 1 TB Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Ground Pepper
  • Kosher salt
Cook your pasta acccording to the box instructions. I'm not being lazy, I just don't think I can do that part better than they can. And if you just whipped up some of your own homemade farfalle and don't have a box? I hope you have a Yia Yia around to bop you with a wooden spoon for not knowing how to cook it.

In a saute pan, toast a handful of your pinenuts, counting on a half handful per eater. That's how we measure around here. These will burn so throw them in once your pan is hot and toss them twice in a minute or two before pouring them into a prep bowl and setting aside. Meanwhile defrost a half a bag of peas in a measuring cup in the microwave. Cut your sausage into medallions and saute those until slightly tanned then add the fresh spinach till it just barely starts to wilt. Shut off the heat, add your pine nuts back in along with the peas.

Drain your pasta, add the ricotta and olive oil. Stir to coat. Add everything else, stir, put in bowls and sprinkle a little parm over the top.

Now marvel that only 18 minutes have gone by since you started. It tastes even better now. Easy but perfectly sweet and smoky. Great textures and reasonably light if you go easy with the parmesan. Warms up nicely for a Wednesday lunch. Or breakfast if you're extra excited about lunch.

But don't get too far ahead. Reward your personal weeknight efficiency with a modest scoop of vanilla ice cream with a glorious splash of raspberry wine over the top. Bask.

11 comments:

kat said...

Salivating. My version of this contains pasta, goat cheese, copious amounts of garlic and whatever vegetables happen to be hanging around in the fridge. Yours looks better, though.

RebeccaC said...

Happiness in a bowl indeed. But where on earth is the garlic?

allison said...

YUM. PS I love that your wine glass was empty by dessert time.

Maris said...

Pine nuts might be pricey, but they last FOREVER. And love your expression "five ways to fancypants." I get the same thing: "How do you cook all the time?" Half of what I cook takes 8 minutes and is not nearly blogworthy.

We Are Not Martha said...

Yum. You're right about easy tasting amazing. And you're also SO right about dining companions. Doesn't it make cooking soo much more rewarding??

Sues

Chelsea Talks Smack said...

Ok, I can do this. i can do this. totally.

TKTC said...

Kat- The more vegetables, the better. Pretty much always. Garlic is a vegetable. And a condiment. And fruit of the tree of knowledge.

Rebecca- I love garlic (see above) but I actually liked the flavor profile here without it. Emphasis defaulted to sweet peas and smoky sausage with some kick from the olive oil.

Allison- Yes, I had to empty the glass so I could add a DIFFERENT kind of wine to my ice cream bowl. Sense and sensibility.

Maris- Thanks :) And it's nice to hear that I'm not alone in my weekday lazyhungry.

WANM- O what a difference a year makes:)

Chelsea- You are Italian. You can do this better than I can after a barrel of Montalcino's finest.

Caroline said...

grumble grumble on the bad winter light... or lack of light all together. Well, good news is that after dec 21 we will start with longer days again! hooray

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