This is the meal you cook when you don’t have a lot of time, or a lot of motivation, but are resistant to the idea of busting out the blue Kraft mac ‘n’ cheese box/ordering pizza/just saying “oh f*ck it” and eating ice cream out of the container. Not that I have ever done any of those things.
Creamy rotini with grape tomatoes & spinach
(adapted from The Comfort of Cooking)
- 1 1/2 tsp olive oil
- 2 cloves minced garlic
- 1 cup heavy cream*
- a few squirts of lemon juice
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 lb rotini pasta
- 1/2 pint grape or cherry tomatoes, chopped
- 3 oz baby spinach, chopped
- 1/4 cup parmesan
Bring a pot of salted water to boil. While waiting, pour olive oil into a good-sized skillet and turn heat to medium. Add minced garlic and allow to soften. Pour in heavy cream* and lemon juice, adding salt and pepper to your liking. Stir together and turn the heat up to high so the liquid will boil. Once it starts to boil, turn the heat to low and cover the skillet, allowing the liquid to simmer for 10 minutes.
Add rotini to boiling water and cook according to package instructions.
Once 10 minutes are up, the pasta should be done cooking as well. Drain it and place immediately back into pot on low heat. Pour cream mixture over pasta, cover, and allow to sit for a few minutes. Then add chopped grape/cherry tomatoes, parmesan, and chopped spinach, stirring together. Cover again and toss the whole thing around vigorously so it mixes properly.
*The heavy cream. I realize this isn’t the healthiest of ingredients, so tonight when I made it, I thought I’d try subbing Greek yogurt. They say you can substitute Greek yogurt for practically anything! Yeah…it didn’t work so well. When I got to the simmering step, it looked kind of lumpy and curdled and frankly did not smell great. Sooo perhaps this is not a recipe where Greek yogurt subs well.
Another note on the heavy cream. After my Greek yogurt disaster, I realized I only had about 1/2 cup of heavy cream. I went ahead with it anyway and it turned out all right; not as decadent and creamy as it is with a full cup, but definitely satisfactory. You can go that route if you’d like.
Start to finish, this recipe takes approximately 20 minutes. And it’s fabulous.