Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Spicy Vegetable Pasta

This is the type of meal I always end up making for myself when I'm not sure what to eat, I'm feeling a little lazy, and I just want to use up stuff I already have in the pantry and refrigerator.

Ingredients:
1 lb pasta - I used spaghetti but whatever you like or have on hand (including short cut pasta) will work
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon crushed red pepper flakes
salt (to salt the pasta water)
black pepper to taste
1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon butter
1 egg yolk
2 or 3 cloves of garlic
handful of mushrooms (baby bella or button mushrooms)
1/4 cup diced red onion
3 tomatoes, seeded and chopped
2 cups baby spinach
Start by prepping the vegetables. Roughly mince the garlic if you like rustic pieces or finely mince it if you're not a fan of biting into a piece of pungent garlic. Then halve the tomatoes, squeeze out the pulpy seeds, and then give them a rough chop (bite-sized pieces). Cut up the onions as small as you prefer them and slice up the mushrooms.

And grate up some cheese.
While you get a pot of water boiling for the pasta, heat up a skillet. Add in the oil and hot pepper flakes and let them heat up slowly so that the oil infuses with the spiciness. Then add in the garlic and onions and let them sweat a bit. Add in mushrooms and ground black pepper (as much as you like) and saute until the mushrooms get a bit of color. Lastly, add in the tomatoes and let them cook and break down a bit.
While the vegetables are cooking, separate an egg. Save the whites for an egg white omelet or make a hydrating face mask.
Drain your pasta and add it to the skillet along with a tablespoon of butter. Toss until butter is melted and then add egg yolk and cheese. Toss quickly so that the cheese doesn't melt and then re-solidify into a big chunk and so the yolk doesn't curdle. Lastly, add spinach and give it a final toss.
Serve in the skillet to avoid having to do extra dishes and invite over all of your vegetarian friends since this meal is 100% meat-free.


Or, invite over some meat-lovers and serve it with butter poached lobster, like I did.

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