Pasta is a great go-to meal for when you’re in a pinch, and also when you’re looking for something easy but out of the ordinary. Sometimes the two go hand-in-hand like this Meatless Monday recipe for creamy pasta with spinach and peas.
What’s old is new
A staple item like pasta can sometimes lose its shine, simply because it’s something you know you can easily turn to for help putting together a hearty and tasty meal. Pasta doesn’t have to get boring! For a new way to serve pasta, try this recipe for creamy pasta with spinach and peas.
The greens add loads of veggies and color, and the cream adds just the right touch of something special. For a Meatless Monday, this is an easy meal to put together, but it won’t bore you since it’s a change of pace from plain pasta sauce.
Everyone’s doing it!
Seems like everyone, even meat-eating famous chefs like Michael Symon, are going meatless on Mondays (or another day of the week). In a recent interview, Chef Symon had this to say:
“I’m like, look, I’m not saying beef and pork is bad, I love it and I eat it six days a week, but one day a week – and quite frankly given my schedule, it’s not always Monday – I just remove meat from my diet. I think it gives the earth a second to breathe and gives my body time to do what it needs to do.”
Creamy pasta with spinach and peas
- 3/4 pound of small-to-medium-sized pasta, like orecchiette
- 8 ounces of fresh or frozen peas (thawed slightly if frozen)
- 10 ounces of fresh baby spinach
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/3 cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper, or to taste
- 1/4 cup toasted walnuts for garnish
- Bring a large pot of water to boil. Add the pasta and cook just a few minutes less than what the package directions recommend.
- Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium-high heat, add the olive oil. Next add the spinach and allow it to wilt. When wilted, add the peas and garlic and mix together well.
- Season the mixture with the salt and pepper and remove from the heat.
- When the pasta is finished, drain the water (reserve about 1/2 cup of the cooking water) and return the pasta to the pot.
- Add the heavy cream to the spinach mixture over medium-high heat.
- When the cream begins to bubble, add the drained pasta to the skillet and mix well.
- Add the Parmesan cheese, and some of the reserved cooking water, just to thin the sauce. Mix everything until well-coated and warmed through.
- Serve on individual plates and garnish with the toasted walnuts.
Meatless Monday is the perfect day of the week to find new ideas for meatless main dish meals!