Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Creamy Spinach Artichoke Pasta

I am always printing off recipes I find online. I stuff all of them into a massive notebook that's already way too full of them -- so full that it will barely close. Because this system is so unorganized, most of those recipes go unused because it's too much of a hassle to sort through all of them to find what I'm looking for.

So, a couple of weeks ago, I found myself with a little bit of spare time, and I decided to organize all of these recipes. I bought a huge three-ring binder, sheet protectors, and labeled dividers, and I threw myself into the project. And now, I have a very well-organized place for all of my internet recipes to call home.

To celebrate, all of our meals this week are coming from that binder. They're all internet recipes I printed out ages ago and haven't yet tried. Last night, I made the first one -- and WOW, was it a winner!

I love the combination of spinach and artichokes, and I love cream cheese, and I love pasta, so when I found a recipe for creamy spinach artichoke pasta I immediately started salivating. This pasta was so, so good. I made a few changes to the recipe, and they were good ones: I added one chopped roasted red pepper, as well as some additional hot sauce and some black pepper, and I topped it all with bread crumbs mixed with melted butter before I put it in the oven. Without these things, I think the pasta may have been too bland. I loved the creaminess of this dish. I can't think of one way I could improve upon it. This is our new favorite pasta dish, and I can tell it's going to become a regular in our house. When I told Joe -- a self-professed hater of leftovers -- that we were having the rest of it tonight for dinner, he was actually happy -- and that's a real testament to how good this is!

Creamy Spinach Artichoke Pasta
Source: Recipezaar

12 ounces campanelle pasta (I used rigatoni)
1 (12 ounce) package cream cheese or neufchatel cheese (I used an 8-ounce block of cream cheese, which was plenty)
3/4 cup sour cream (increased to 1 cup)
1 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon hot pepper sauce (I eyeballed it, but probably used about a teaspoon)
2 cups shredded swiss cheese
1 (13 3/4 ounce) can artichoke hearts, drained, halved
1 (10 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed, squeezed dry
1/3 cup shredded parmesan cheese

1 cup breadcrumbs, mixed with melted butter

1. Preheat oven to 350.

2. Cook pasta according to directions, drain; return to pot; reserve.

3. In large bowl at medium speed beat cream cheese and sour cream until smooth; reduce speed to low; add milk, salt, garlic powder, black pepper and hot sauce.

4. Beat until combined, 30 seconds; stir in 1 1/2 cups swiss cheese, artichokes, spinach and roasted red pepper.

5. Pour over pasta; toss to combine.

6. Spoon pasta mixture into a shallow baking dish; sprinkle with remaining swiss cheese, parmesan cheese and bread crumbs.

7. Bake until heated through, 30 minutes. If desired, to brown cheese broil 1 minute.


thepastyharlot said...

I made this recipe last night after having a ton of your recipes saved to my desktop for months. The fiancee and I were quite pleased! It came out of the dish beautifully with no hesitation, and disappeared just as gracefully when we both had seconds. I made a few (minor) changes, but other than that, thanks for posting a delicious recipe to try!

pamela giammarco said...

i made this at thanksgiving as a side dish it was great! everyone loved it! thank you for posting