Meatless Monday: One-pot pasta

Sometimes a multi-step dinner is just too much. For those stressful weeknights, or a night 'Chef Dad' is on duty, this one-pot pasta is a great solution. 

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    Throw everything into one pot, bring to a boil, and stir. This pasta recipe is that easy!
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Sometimes you need to be able to throw everything into a pot and call it a meal.

I had one of those days yesterday. April was taunting me with one of its proverbial showers when I’d already grown re-accustomed to the warm North Carolina spring and my sewing machine wasn’t cooperating, and I was grumpy. Basically, in no mood for cooking. Or human interaction, for that matter.

The last time I had this dish it was made for me by a dear friend, and I find that when I need a lift, summoning up a fond food memory often does the trick.

Now that I’ve made it myself, I am officially a convert. The pasta starch imparts a creamy texture to the sauce and the steps could not be easier. It’s a meal worth sharing, and I am grateful that I was able to share it with my friend – and now with you.

One-pot pasta
Adapted from this recipe
Serves 4

12 ounces linguine

16-ounce can diced tomatoes

2 cups fresh spinach

1 onion, thinly sliced

6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

1/2 teaspoon red-pepper flakes

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

4 cups water

4 sprigs basil, divided

4 tablespoons olive oil, divided

Parmesan cheese

1. Combine first eight ingredients in a pot wide enough to allow the pasta to lie flat against the bottom. Add 2 sprigs of basil and 2 tablespoons of olive oil.

2. Put the pot over high heat and bring to a boil. Stir regularly for about 10 minutes.

3. Serve the pasta with the remaining 2 sprigs of basil, drizzle with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

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