Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Seriously Delicious Pasta

We experienced our first winter storm the day before Saint Patrick's day. It wasn't a horrible blizzard but it was cold and windy and we'd gotten used to leaving our scarfs, gloves and boots in the closet. Needless to say we weren't eager to walk around Boston, pushing our way through the crowds in an attempt to get to the bar.

Instead, we thought about going out to dinner, feeling a bit pathetic that at 21 and 22 years old we'd celebrate with blockbuster and takeout. Eventually though, we decided that the later was exactly what we wanted to do. So, after picking up
The Holiday (I enjoyed it even if the reviews are poor) and The Departed (One of the Top Five Best Movies I've ever seen) at Blockbuster, we started discussing Chinese, Thai, and Indian food. Thankfully, I remembered all the spectacular ingredients I had sitting in our fridge and we instead enjoyed a truly hearty and comforting pasta dish.

Initially I was planning on making a sausage and spinach soup so I had purchased beautiful Italian sausages from wholefoods and a gigantic bag of spinach. I also had creme fraiche left over from the
spinach pancakes and some basil and Romano cheese. The end result was honestly one of the best pasta dishes I've ever made (and I make a lot) and as Alex was a fan as well, I know I'll be making it again. I think the biggest success / contributor to this dish is the creme / lemon sauce creation, so if you have different meat or vegetables handy I'm sure they'd taste just as good.

Saint Patrick's Day Pasta

1/4 cup creme fraiche
2 tbsp. lemon juice
1/4 cup basil
2 tbsp. chicken broth
salt & pepper

Sausage-Spinach-Sun Dried Tomatoes- Pasta:
2 large Italian sausages (could use spicy / sweet - i used regular)
1 large bag of spinach
4 tbsp. garlic, diced
1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes soaked in olive oil- diced
1 box dried wheat pasta (I used spirals)
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Romano cheese for sprinkling

1.) SAUCE: Place all sauce ingredients into the food processor and blend until creamy, adding more chicken broth if consistency is too thick.
2.) PASTA:

Prepare pasta following box directions.
Slice sausage into bite size pieces (remove casing)
Heat oil in pan and add garlic once hot
After sauteing garlic for 3-4 minutes add sausage and sun dried tomatoes
Once sausage is cooked through add 1/2 a bag of spinach
Cook for five minutes
Drain pasta and add it to the sausage / tomatoes & spinach
Pour food processor sauce over the ingredients
Serve Immediately with cheese and fresh basil