Quick and simple meals are nice for busy days this time of year. DH loves Italian meals, so I came up with a recipe that goes together fast yet is lighter than the usual Italian fare. Part meal and part salad, it goes together in one dish. It is a perfect meal for these early days of autumn, while it is still warm outside.
The base of the dish is fresh spinach, a large handful in each bowl. I remove the tough stems, as I learned from Julia Child.
I brown about 12 oz of Italian sausage in a skillet …
then drain off the fat using a colander.
Onions are sauteed in just a bare amount of olive oil, then set aside. I use about 1/4-cup. I chop a fresh tomato and set the pasta to boil. I cook about 2 cups of pasta for two servings.
Returning the sausage to the pan, add the cooked onions.
Add tomato sauce, or some of my dried tomatoes in oil, and a bit of half and half (or better still, some ricotta cheese) to make the sauce creamy. Add the chopped fresh tomato to punch up the fresh taste. Throw in some chopped fresh basil and parsley too if you have those in your garden.
Add the pasta and toss in the sauce.
I put shredded mozzarella on the fresh raw spinach.
Top with the pasta mixture, sprinkle with a bit of Parmesan and serve. The heat of the pasta and meat mixture will slightly wilt the spinach.
Yum, satisfies DH’s Italian craving, and yet not too heavy a meal for a weeknight.
Use your favorite pasta with sauce recipe, just serve a lighter portion on fresh spinach. The best news, it is a throw-in-what-you-want recipe, with really no hard amounts, so just do as you like. Adding some mushrooms would be good.
Do you have a great stove top pasta recipe? What would you add to this recipe?