Monday, June 16, 2008

'move it or lose it' pasta!

dear friends,

many of you who are reading this blog probably know the following two things about me: one, if there's anything i hate in this world, it's wasting food. and two, i am moving out of my apartment soon. so i was perusing the insides of my fridge last night, the anxiety about everything i had to eat before the move on thursday building.... and i ended up concocting a pretty wild and delicious noodle extravaganza.

here's what i did:

boiled a bag of rigatoni pasta until i thought that it could probably use about 3 minutes more cooking time (but you could use any tube-shaped pasta, i would imagine.) drained and set aside.

in a very large and deep skillet on medium heat, i sauteed two diced shallots, three cloves of minced garlic, and a teaspoon of dried crushed hot pepper in something like a quarter of a cup of olive oil until soft and fragrant (about 6 minutes). i found part of a leftover yellow pepper and added it to the mix. then chopped fresh basil (i added the contents of my refrigerator, so you really can put a lot and it is delicious). then about a cup of diced sundried tomatoes (you could also add fresh tomatoes, or whatever you have). black olives and surprise! i found a can of chickpeas, which i rinsed and drained and added to the mix. finally, i incorporated money teph's broth method - i added a bag of baby spinach (about 4 handfuls) along with some vegetable broth and turned the heat up. when everything seemed to be well-mixed and delicious, i added the mostly-cooked pasta and combined with cracked black pepper. now the most delicious part - as much grated cheese as you can possibly find. i had about 150g of gruyere and some parmesan. on low heat, mix it ALLLLL in.

when the stovetop portion is all said and done, place your pasta mixture in a glass casserole baking dish (grease with a bit of olive oil). sprinkle the top with some bread crumbs and remaining cheeses and bake at 350F until the top is crisp and the insides are hot and bubbling - about 20 minutes.

you can use this method with pretty much anything you have in the fridge. the versatility is really the charm..... i'm sure that it would be delicious with zucchinis, tomatoes, pesto, garden gnomes... you name it.

whew! well, don't we all feel better now?!!

that's just me. but really. i really really do.)

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