Day 13: Rainy Monday = Easy Pasta!

Blech. Mondays. Double blech? Rainy Mondays. On days like today, when it’s damp and muggy, it’s almost impossible to even fake being productive. All I’d really like to do is nap on the couch while catching up on my trashy Bravo shows. Is there a way to get paid for that??

The next couple of days are going to be pretty gloomy like this (thanks to tropical depression Ana), but it’s my birthday week so I’m going to try to keep things positive J The best way I know how to do that? Carbs. And cheese. And super delicious chicken sausage.

Chicken Sausage PastaThis dish, in keeping with my not wanting to do anything theme, comes together in about 20 minutes (is it just me or are these recipes steadily increasing in time? Soon we’ll be up to a 4 hour Thanksgiving-esque event… ) It’s also very easily customizable; I didn’t feel like going to the store so I just worked with what I had on hand. In this case that includes whole wheat spaghetti noodles, baby spinach, parmesan cheese, and chicken sausage. And since we’re pairing cheese and sausage with whole wheat and spinach, this basically counts as health food. Wins all around!

Spinach with chicken sausageI would definitely recommend using a spicy or flavored sausage for this meal. All of the flavor comes from sautéing the sausage with garlic and onion in olive oil, so the more flavorful the sausage, the better the sauce. I occasionally use a spicy ground turkey sausage, but today we’re going with roasted red pepper and spinach chicken sausage. This stuff is GOOD and since I bought it at Costco it was a steal.

I fully intend on plopping myself on the couch with a full bowl of this deliciousness and a nice glass of cheap white wine (Barefoot Crisp White for the win!), watching all the Real Housewives reunions I’ve missed, and possibly not moving from that spot until tomorrow morning.

Mmmmmm...
Mmmmmm…

Sautéed Spinach and Sausage Pasta
Prep time: 5 min Total Time: 20 min
Serves: 4

Ingredients:
• 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
• 3 cloves garlic, minced

• ½ of a medium yellow onion, diced
• 1 package (4 links) of chicken sausage, sliced
• 1 lb baby spinach, roughly chopped*
• 1 package whole wheat spaghetti noodles**
• 1 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
• ½ cup of shredded parmesan cheese
• Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:
1. In a large pot, boil water with a large pinch of salt. Add noodles to boiling water and cook to al dente per package directions. Drain pasta and set aside.
2. While the pasta is cooking, heat 1 tbsp of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
3. When the oil is warm, add garlic and onion and cook until fragrant, about 1-2 minutes. Be careful not to let your garlic burn or it will get bitter!
4. After 2 minutes, add sliced chicken sausage to the skillet and cook for 6-8 minutes – stirring occasionally. Your pasta should be done cooking by now.
5. Add chopped spinach to the skillet with another tablespoon of olive oil and red pepper flakes, if using. Sauté for 2-3 minutes until spinach is wilted.
6. Toss cooked noodles in the skillet to coat, sprinkle on as much parmesan cheese as your little heart desires, and enjoy!

*This seems excessive, but it wilts down a lot when cooking
** I typically only make ¼ of the box since I am serving myself, but this recipe was done for a larger group

 

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