Wednesday, February 15, 2012

30 Minute Meals. Psssh...try 10.

I must confess.  I cheated.  I had dinner at Panera tonight.  I wasn't going to, really.  But then my friend got a salad, and it was fresh--not previously frozen--green things.  And, well, I caved.  Who knew lettuce could be so wonderful.


This must count for something.  Larry was home waiting for dinner, so when I got home, I made the from-the-pantry meal I had been planning.  I just didn't eat it with him.  Though, dear reader, I did contemplate--briefly--lying and saying I hadn't eaten, so I could boast about my eating-at-home streak.  But summer will come, and I won't want to wear a parka in July, so I didn't.  Also, because there are limits to even my insanity.

Dinner was Pasta with White Beans, Kale, Artichokes and Tomato Sauce.  And because it was mostly from the freezer, it was ready in about ten minutes.  Not too shabby.  The nice thing about tomato sauce is that if you add things like fresh garlic and onions, it doesn't taste like it came from a freezer or pantry. This was a little briny from the artichoke hearts, chewy from the kale and pasta, and creamy from the beans and tomatoes.  And these ingredients, especially the beans, tomatoes, and kale, are made for each other.  Add a sprinkling of Pecorino-Romano cheese, and it's a filling dinner for a cool winter night.

White Bean, Kale, Artichoke Tomato Sauce

2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 onion, chopped
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1 garlic clove, minced
1 cup chopped kale (mine was previously frozen and defrosted; if you're using fresh, this is probably half of a bunch)
1 1/2 tbsp tomato paste
2 cups crushed (or whatever--diced, sauce, etc.) tomatoes
1 can (or defrosted equivalent) of cannellini or other white beans
3 artichoke hearts, from a 15 oz can, drained and chopped
salt and pepper to taste

1.  Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add onion, red pepper flakes, and stir, about two minutes, until onion begins to soften.  Add garlic, stir, one minute.
2.  Add kale to skillet, sprinkle with salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, for about three minutes (if previously frozen; if fresh, make it about six-seven). 
3.  Add tomato paste and stir through.  Add tomato sauce, beans, and artichoke hearts.  Bring to a low boil, reduce heat, and cook until sauce is thickened to your liking, 5-7 minutes.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Serve over pasta.


Jaclyn said...

Oh boy, oh boy! Larry's lunch looks good today. I'm going to have to try this one over the weekend. I already have everything except the artichoke hearts. Happiness.

angela said...

lettuce is lovely. now show me some quinoa love....

Christine said...

You got it, Angela. :) Just got a new "cooking with grains" cookbook and will be playing around with that in the very near future!