This pasta was so good and flavorful, and that amazes me, because there’s just not a lot to it! I used ziti instead of penne (because that’s what I had on hand- plus a little bit of rotini), and I used feta instead of Parmesan. This was a snap to make, and we all really really liked it! If you leave off the feta, it’s vegan!
Grape Tomato, Olive, and Spinach Pasta
(Cooking Light, March 2014)
8 ounces uncooked penne (about 2 cups)- I used ziti and rotini
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 large garlic clove, thinly sliced
2 cups grape tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup organic vegetable broth
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
10 kalamata olives, pitted and coarsely chopped
4 cups baby spinach
1/4 cup torn basil leaves
1 ounce Parmesan cheese, grated (about 1/4 cup)- I used feta
1. Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil. Add pasta; cook 8 minutes or until al dente, omitting salt and fat. Drain in a colander over a bowl, reserving 1/2 cup cooking liquid.
2. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add red pepper and garlic; sauté 30 seconds. Add tomatoes, broth, salt, black pepper, and olives; cook 6 minutes or until tomatoes begin to break down, stirring occasionally. Add pasta and 1/2 cup reserved cooking liquid to pan; simmer 2 minutes. Stir in spinach and basil; cook 2 minutes or until greens wilt. Divide pasta mixture evenly among 4 bowls; top with Parmesan cheese. Serve immediately.