This was my latest brainstorm recipe that turned out so well that my husband and I could hardly stop eating this. I had a lot of different vegetables that needed to be used up, not enough time to thaw some meat and wanted to do something easy before I had to run off to work in the evening. It turned out that the veggies I had worked wonderful together for this dish, but I really think you could use all different types of vegetables and have a great dish. The cooking time for this is less than 30 minutes and would be a great weeknight meal if you have the veggies already prepped.
Serves about 6 (or 4 adult servings)
- 1 large head of cauliflower, cleaned and finely chopped, including the upper stems
- 1 pint size container of grape tomatoes (or you could substitute 1 15oz. can of diced tomatoes with juice)
- 1 large onion or 2 small-medium onions
- 2 medium carrots, medium diced, or may use baby carrots chopped
- 2 large celery ribs, chopped
- 2-3 mushrooms
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced
- olive oil
- palmful of Italian seasoning/herb blend
- salt blend like Goya Adobo with pepper
- 1 pound pasta of choice
- cream or half and half
- 2-4 large handfuls of spinach, chopped (or may use 1/2 small package of frozen spinach); may use another type of greens
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, shredded
- 1/2 cup romano cheese, shredded
- 2-3 low fat string cheese sticks, shredded and then chopped (optional), or may use handful of shredded mozarella cheese
- chopped parsley for garnish
- In a large covered skillet, generously drizzle olive oil over the vegetables and season with seasoned salt blend and crushed Italian seasoning. After it has begun to cook and soften a little, cover the pan so the juices do not evaporate out. Stir occasionally and add a little water if needed.
- While the veggies are cooking, start the pasta water. Liberally salt the water. Cook pasta about 2 minutes less than the recommended time as it will cook in the sauce at the end.
- As the veggies become tender as you desire, add in the cream gradually until the sauce is lightly creamy- I used about 1/4-1/3 cup.
- Add in the chopped spinach.
- Pull out about 1 - 1 1/2 cup of pasta water as the pasta is finished and set it aside.
- Add the cheeses to the vegetable mixture and then add in the drained pasta.
- Combine everything together and add in as much pasta water as you need to make enough sauce to cover the pasta. Cover the pan as it cooks together for a couple more minutes.
- Garnish with parsley and serve with a garlic bread or other warm rustic bread.
*Note- if using more sturdy greens in place of spinach, add them in with the vegetables at the beginning since they need more time to cook.