Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Florentine Pasta Bake****

A wonderful use for collard greens.  This is wholesome and comforting pasta dish where the collards add such a nice texture and flavor.  I don't recall having many "greens" growing up so I was thrilled to find this recipe that uses them in a pasta dish.  They somehow seem less frightening to work with this way.

foodblog 006 

  • 4 tablespoons EVOO
  • 4 tablespoons flour
  • 3 cups milk
  • Salt and pepper
  • Nutmeg, to taste
  • 1 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano, divided
  • 2 tablespoons EVOO
  • 1 garlic clove, cracked or 3 green garlic stems, chopped
  • 1 bunch collard greens, stems removed and leaves roughly chopped
  • 2 pounds spinach, stems removed and leaves roughly chopped
  • 1 box whole-wheat short pasta


    Preheat oven to 375ºF.


    Place a medium pot over medium heat oil. Sprinkle the flour over the oil and cook for about a minute. Slowly whisk the milk into the oil-flour mixture and season with salt, pepper and nutmeg. Let it thicken a couple of minutes then stir in about 1/2 a cup of the Parmigiano. Set the sauce aside.


    Place a large, cast iron skillet over medium-high heat with 2 turns of the pan of EVOO, about 2 tablespoons. Toss in the cracked clove of garlic and cook for a minute or two to release its aroma and flavor. Add in the chard and wilt it down, about 2 minutes, then wilt in the spinach a few handfuls at a time. Season the greens with salt and pepper.


    Toss the dried pasta into the skillet and give them a good stir to incorporate them with the greens. Pour the sauce into the skillet, stirring again to evenly incorporate everything. Smooth the top down and sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup of Parmigiano Reggiano over top of the lasagna.

    Cover the skillet with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the foil from the pan and let it finish uncovered for about 15 more minutes to brown the cheese.

    Recipe adopted from Rachael Ray Show

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