Sunday, 25 October 2015

Cheesy Basil + Spinach Pasta.

The other week I shared with you some things I'd like to start doing now that I'm technically an adult. One of those was to cook more, and although I wanted to venture outside of my Italian comfort zone, I knocked up a quick pasta dish with what I could find in my cupboards the other day, and it ended up being so delicious that I just have to share it with you all. Now I'm slightly apprehensive about sharing my own recipe as I'm really not sure about measurements and portion sizes, so hopefully you'll bare with me for this one as it really is worth it. I will share a list of ingredients for you at the end, but you will have to read my instructions carefully to know the kind of rough measurements I'm talking. I would say this recipe makes enough for two people, but it is so easy that you can adapt it for however many people you might be cooking for.

First of all bring a pan of water to the boil and add your pasta with a pinch of salt. To measure pasta portions I generally use the kind of bowl I'd eat the meal in and put half of the pasta into it per portion. Now I used rigatoni pasta for my dish but use whatever you prefer, I do think rigatoni is amazing though and I used it from the brand Napolina if you're interested.

After the pasta has been cooking for around 5 minutes on a medium to high heat, you then want to get out another pan to cook your topping in and add in around a table spoon of butter to a low heat and melt per two portions. Once the butter has melted add in a clove of chopped garlic and fry just before it is lightly browned. Then add in around a table spoon of flour and fry with the butter. You then need to add in milk gradually and keep stirring until you have a thick roux. 

You then want to stir in a tablespoon of basil pesto and your chopped spinach. To prepare your spinach simply grab a large handful of spinach leaves, place on a microwave safe plate and microwave for a minute on high. Then grab the spinach, squeeze out the excess moisture and chop finely. 

Now all you need to add to the topping is the cheese, and make sure you turn off the heat at this point. I used a mature cheddar which I chopped up but you can also grate it. For two people I used around 175g of cheese but feel free to give or take as much as you need and stir in thoroughly to your mixture.

Finally put your cooked pasta in a colander to drain out the water and mix your pasta and topping together. I usually make sure to cook my topping in a larger pan so that I can add in the pasta and stir it into the sauce with ease.

Ingredients (measurements given should be treated as a rough estimate to serve 2 people)
Rigatoni pasta
A Pinch of Salt
Butter // 1 Tablespoon
Garlic // 1 Clove
Flour // 1 + Tablespoon
Basil Pesto // 1 Tablespoon
Spinach // Large Handful
Cheese // 175g

This recipe makes for a super indulgent winter warmer with some amazing flavours. I'm not a chef by any stretch of the imagination but my incredibly hard to please sister was very impressed by this dish and I had to make it the day after as well because we loved it so much. 

Thank you so much for reading, do let me know if you give this recipe a go x